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Commemorations held in WA, NT and Tasmania for 81st anniversary of the Battle of Crete

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Commemorations for the 81st anniversary of the Battle of Crete continued across Australia over the weekend as the Greek communities of Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Tasmania held wreath laying ceremonies and memorials.

Here is The Greek Herald‘s rundown of what commemoration events were held.

Western Australia:

The Consulate of Greece in Perth organised a wreath laying ceremony at Kings Park State War Memorial on Sunday, May 29 to commemorate the 81st anniversary of the Battle of Crete and the 103rd anniversary of the Greek Pontian genocide.

All photos for WA sourced via Facebook.

The ceremony was attended by a number of Australian and Greek dignitaries and military personnel including, but not limited to, the Governor of WA, the Honourable Kim Beazley AC, and His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia.

On the day, the traditional singing of the National Anthems of Greece and Australia was performed, followed by a recital of the Ode to Remembrance by the last remaining veteran in WA of the Battle of Crete, 104-year-old Arthur Leggett.

Attendees then proceeded, one by one, to lay a wreath at the Monument.

Northern Territory:

The Greek community of Darwin also commemorated the Battle of Crete on Wednesday, May 25 with a special Doxology and wreath laying ceremony organised by the Cretan Association of the Northern Territory.

The Doxology was held at St Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Darwin and this was followed by light refreshments at the adjoining hall.

All photos for NT sourced via Facebook.

Attendees then proceeded to the Darwin Cenotaph War Memorial for the wreath laying ceremony and a number of speeches.

Among those who laid wreaths were numerous members of the local Greek community organisations, as well as representatives of the Greek and Australian Armed Forces.

This included, but is not limited to, the Deputy Chief of the Hellenic National Defence General Staff, Vice Admiral Ioannis Drymousis; the Head of the 1st Department Public Relations Directorate Squadron, Colonel (AF) Miltiadis Militsis; the military attaché from Canberra, Colonel Ioannis Fassianos; Marie-Clare Boothby MP representing the Leader of the NT Opposition; the High Commissioner of the Republic of Cyprus in Australia, Martha Mavrommatis; the Mayor of Darwin, Kon Vatskalis; the Honourary Consul of Greece in Darwin, John Anictomatis, the President of the Cretan Federation of Australia & New Zealand, Tony Tsourdalakis; and the President of the Greek Orthodox Community of North Australia, Nicholas Poniris.

Tasmania:

A Doxology and wreath laying ceremony was held in Tasmania on Sunday, May 29 to honour the ANZACs and Cretan locals who fought in the Battle of Crete.

The event, which were organised by the Cretan Association of Tasmania, started with a Doxology presided over by His Grace Bishop Bartholomew of Charioupolis and held at St George The Martyr Greek Orthodox Church in Hobart.

Following the church service, people gathered at the nearby Hobart Cenotaph where His Grace held a trisagion service before a number of prominent members of the Greek community and representatives of the Greek and Australian Armed Forces laid wreaths.

All photos for Tasmania sourced via Facebook.

Those who laid wreaths included, but is not limited to, the military attaché from Canberra, Colonel Ioannis Fassianos; Bishop Bartholomew; the Opposition Leader of Tasmania, Rebecca White MP; and the President of the Cretan Association of Tasmania, John Fiotakis.

At the conclusion of these official proceedings, a reception was held at the Hellenic House where a light lunch was served, speeches were given and dancing by Cretan youth was enjoyed.

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