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Coronavirus: Australia and New Zealand commemorate Anzac Day from home
25 April 2020, 13:17
Australians and New Zealanders were forced to mark Anzac Day from inside and outside their homes as memorial services were hit by the coronavirus lockdown.
The annual day of remembrance for Aussies and Kiwis who have fallen in global conflicts is traditionally the calendar's largest event for the two countries.
However, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has meant that large gatherings are not possible in either nation.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern began proceedings by sharing an Instagram post that showed a wreath outside her home in Wellington, the country's capital.
A second photo also showed her and fiance Clarke Gayford standing with her father, Ross Ardern.
She wrote: "On my street one of our neighbours played the service through a small speaker while we all stood apart but together... A different, but still a really special Anzac Day. Lest we forget."
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Really moving to see all the images of kiwis standing at dawn to commemorate Anzac Day this year. On my street one of our neighbours played the service through a small speaker while we all stood apart but together. I had my bubble alongside me, and some flowers my mum found in the garden. A different, but still a really special Anzac Day. Lest we forget. #standatdawn @nzdefenceforce
Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison tweeted a photograph of himself with wife Jenny at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra with the caption "Lest We Forget".
He delivered a commemorative address at the site in the nation's capital, while the memorial's Twitter account encouraged people to share photos of themselves outside their homes for the traditional dawn service.
Anzac Day, held every year on 25 April, commemorates the anniversary of the start of the brutal First World War Gallipoli landings.
Thousands of Anzac troops (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) died in the 1915 campaign that is widely recognised as a costly defeat for Entente powers.
At dawn this morning, a lone bugler called out from the steps of the Sydney Opera House.— Sydney Opera House (@SydOperaHouse) April 24, 2020
This special #AnzacDay commemoration was part of the RSL's #LightUpTheDawn initiative to show our support for veterans and families across the nation.#LestWeForget
Photo by Dan Boud. pic.twitter.com/fvfyL5Jznh
Waves of Allied forces launched an amphibious attack on the strategically important Turkish peninsula, which was key to controlling the Dardanelles straits, the crucial route to the Black Sea and Russia.
But the plan, backed by Winston Churchill, then first lord of the admiralty, was flawed and the campaign, which faced a heroic defence by the Turks, led to a stalemate and withdrawal eight months later.
Today is #AnzacDay. While we cannot lay wreaths in person this year, we will always remember the brave and selfless sacrifice of Australians and New Zealanders, including those that served alongside our own British soldiers. Lest we forget. #StandAtDawn— Dominic Raab (@DominicRaab) April 25, 2020
Its legacy is the celebration of the "Anzac spirit" - courage, endurance, initiative, discipline and mateship - shown by the Antipodean troops.
The Australian High Commission held a special commemoration service, hosted by the High Commissioner for Australia and the Acting High Commissioner for New Zealand, from their respective homes in the UK from 11am.
The Sydney Opera House posted a picture of a lone bugler calling out from the steps of the building at dawn.
Meanwhile, Clarence House, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab and the Royal Navy all paid their respects to the "brave and selfless" troops who "served alongside our own British soldiers."
Today we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our #Australian and #NewZealand friendsand allies on #ANZACDay, remembering Commonwealth soldiers who stormedGallipoli #OTD in 1915, ferried ashore by the Royal Navy on thefirst day of the Dardanelles campaign pic.twitter.com/z5hz7WdkA9— Royal Navy (@RoyalNavy) April 25, 2020
The Royal Navy tweeted: "Today we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our #Australian and #NewZealand friends and allies on #ANZACDay, remembering the Commonwealth soldiers who stormed Gallipoli #OTD (on this day) in 1915, ferried ashore by the Royal Nave on the first day of the Dardanelles campaign."
Hundreds of people took to social media to upload their own pictures of them standing respectfully at dawn either by candlelight or with their neighbours along the streets of Australia and New Zealand.
Lest we forget. #AnzacDay2020Posted by Australian High Commission in the United Kingdom on Saturday, 25 April 2020