New Zealand Embassy Manila, The Philippines

Anzac Day 2013 commemoration in Manila

The New Zealand and Australian Embassies in Manila will jointly host this year’s Anzac Day commemoration on Thursday 25 April, at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers) in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City, Metro Manila.  The ceremony will commence at 5:30am.

"The spirit of the ANZAC has helped New Zealand and Australia play our part internationally in the decades since the First World War to protect peace, freedom and security where these are under threat." said New Zealand Ambassador Reuben Levermore.

“Anzac Day pays respect to those Australians and New Zealanders who have given their lives in service of their countries during times of war, conflicts and peacekeeping operations.  The sacrifice made by these men and women leave us with the legacy of what we call the ‘Spirit of Anzac.’  It epitomises the qualities of courage, mateship and sacrifice, and is an essential element in the sense of identity of Australian and New Zealanders,” said Australian Ambassador Bill Tweddell.

Anzac Day marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by New Zealand and Australian Forces during the First World War.  ANZAC was the name given to the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps which landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey early on the morning of 25 April 1915.

Attended by the New Zealand and Australian communities, as well as partners from the Philippine armed forces, police and other government offices, this day of remembrance is open to anyone who wishes to acknowledge the fallen of those two countries in an annual dawn service that has its roots in an operational routine which is still observed today.  Known as “Stand-to”, this routine calls for soldiers in defensive positions to be woken up in the dark, right before dawn, so that by the time first light creeps across the battlefield, they are fully awake and not quite vulnerable to tricks of the light.

Anyone attending the ceremonies is welcome to lay a wreath, although there is no obligation to do so. People wishing to lay a wreath are requested to produce and coordinate their own arrangements. Attendees are also encouraged to wear medals.  Personal medals should be worn on the left breast; medals of family members should be worn on the right breast.

Attendees should arrive at the venue by 5:15 am to allow a prompt start.  A ‘gunfire breakfast’ will be available following the ceremony.

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