25 Apr 2011

Soldiers mark Anzac Day overseas

9:30 pm on 25 April 2011

The New Zealand Defence Force says dawn services will be held in Solomon Islands, East Timor and Afghanistan to mark Anzac Day.

The Defence Force says people in East Timor understand the importance of Anzac Day because of the unrest there until independence in 2002.

Major Adam Gordon, the head of the New Zealand Defence Force mission in Solomon Islands, says the Anzac Day service helps remind the troops of why they are there.

New Zealand personnel have been serving in Solomon Islands since 2003.

Troops from New Zealand, Australia and Tonga will attend the service in the capital Honiara.

The Defence Force in Afghanistan will remember New Zealand soldiers who lost their lives there.

Lieutenant Colonel Hugh McAslan says his squad at Bamyan will remember two soldiers who died on duty in the past year - Lieutenant Tim O'Donnell and Private Kirifi Mila.

New Zealand forces have been in Afghanistan since 2003.