2023 ANZAC Day Commemoration in Berlin
The Embassies of Australia and New Zealand held the National Day of Remembrance in BerlinApril 27th, 2023
ANZAC Day is a National Day of Remembrance in Australia and New Zealand that commemorates the sacrifices made by Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) soldiers during World War I. It is observed annually on April 25th, the day that ANZAC troops landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey in 1915.
The ANZAC forces were part of a larger Allied force that was attempting to secure a sea route from Europe to Russia by way of the Dardanelles. The landing at Gallipoli was the ANZAC forces’ first major engagement in the war, and it quickly turned into a brutal and costly battle that lasted eight months. Although the ANZAC forces were eventually withdrawn, the battle became a symbol of the bravery and sacrifice of the Australian and New Zealand soldiers.
ANZAC Day is a solemn day of reflection and commemoration for both countries. Dawn services are held across Australia and New Zealand to mark the time when the ANZAC forces landed in Gallipoli, and many people attend marches and other commemorative events throughout the day. The Australian Embassy and the New Zealand Embassy in Berlin organized a Dawn Service on Tuesday, 25 April, 2023, at 5:30 am, at the Berlin Commonwealth War Cemetery in Heerstraße.
As the Ambassador of Australia in Berlin Philip Green remarked during ANZAC Day 2023:
‘’ In our increasingly ceremony-free societies, this is one ritual that continues to gather strength (…). Yes, ANZAC Day is an act of Australian and New Zealand remembrance. But the tradition of our nations is that we mourn not only for our country men and women lost in war. In this national act of remembrance, we recall all those who have lost their lives, in all conflicts around the world. (…) Our ANZAC remembrance at this time has special significance and solemnity because war has returned to the European continent. We can only be appalled that, just 850 kilometres away from Berlin, shells are again falling and shattering innocent lives. ‘’
Then, for what concerns the relationship between Australia and Germany, Ambassador Green added:
‘’ The presence here today of Parliamentary State Secretary Hitschler, and the many senior officers from the Bundeswehr and the Foreign Office, is an unmistakable symbol of the strength of the contemporary partnerships that New Zealand and Australia enjoy with Germany. A country that now exemplifies all the values that New Zealand and Australia hold dear. ‘’