Media release: 10 November 2020
Tomorrow’s National Armistice Day Commemoration will be observed by a ceremony at Pukeahu National War Memorial Park, Bernadette Cavanagh Tumu Whakarae Chief Executive Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture and Heritage said.
“After four years of conflict the Armistice between Germany and the Allies ending the First World War was signed in the early hours of 11 November 1918 and at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the guns fell silent,” says Bernadette Cavanagh.
“Bells were rung and parades were held throughout Aotearoa to signal the end of the war to end all wars.
“Significantly the Armistice occurred as New Zealand experienced the peak of the 1918 global influenza pandemic (Black November). Between October and December some 9000 people, including 2500 Māori, died during the pandemic.
“This year’s Armistice commemoration will take the form of an Act of Remembrance (wreath laying ceremony) held at the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior.
“Minister of Defence Hon Peeni Henare will give the address. Hon Judith Collins and MP Nicola Willis will represent the Opposition, and His Excellency Brigadier General Francis Agwi Papua New Guinea High Commissioner will represent the Diplomatic Corps. Representatives of Taranaki Whānui, Air Marshal Kevin Short Chief of Defence Force, BJ Clark President of the Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Association, and Major Fiona Cassidy (Retired) from the National War Memorial Advisory Council will also attend.
“Armistice Day is an opportunity to acknowledge the trauma and loss caused by the First World War and all wars and peacekeeping operations in which New Zealanders have been involved.
“Today members of our Defence Force are contributing to international peace and security initiatives overseas and here in New Zealand they are occupied in the COVID-19 response,” Bernadette Cavanagh said.
Contact Christine Seymour 027 807 9400, [email protected]
Published on 10th November 2020