On Monday, Australians and New Zealanders gathered in Jakarta, and all over Indonesia, for Anzac Day to commemorate those who served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations.
Present servicemen and other Australians who attended the dawn services around the country remembered those who had been killed while defending Java and Sumatra during the Japanese advance in 1942.
“It’s a sad fact of history that in too many years you can find an action or battle that has cost servicemen and women and their families greatly,” Australian Ambassador Paul Grigson said as he attended a dawn service in Jakarta.
On this 100th anniversary of Anzac Day, the gathering remembered those who had died in Indonesia during the Second World War where servicemen were incarcerated for years.
Among those remembered at the ceremony were 65 army nurses who were evacuated from Singapore when their ship was bombed and wrecked in 1942. Twelve nurses were lost at sea while 21 others were executed by the Japanese on Bangka Island, Sumatra.
The rest was held captive for 3.5 years with only 24 returning home to Australia after the war ended.
In Australia, thousands of people joined Anzac Day commemorations in areas including Queensland, Gold Coast, New South Wales, Western and South Australia.