Mar 10, 2005

ANZAC Cove complacency


MEDIA RELEASE: Anthony Albanese – 10 March 2005

The Prime Minister continued to display his arrogance in Question Time today when he attacked the questioning of the Government’s mishandling of Anzac Cove road works, which according to The Daily Telegraph has left it "resembling an open cut mine".

This attack came just minutes after his Foreign Minister admitted that the Howard Government was responsible for these massive works.

The facts are simple:

  • Fifteen months ago, on 18 December 2003 the Prime Minister stated unequivocally that the "Anzac site at Gallipoli should represent the first nomination for inclusion on the National Heritage List". 7 sites have been listed, but Anzac Cove is not one of them.
  • If Anzac Cove had been listed on the National Heritage List, it would ensure it was protected as a site which helps give Australia our national identity.
  • There are disputes as to whether human remains have been disturbed, but there are no doubts that important Australian artefacts including cartridge cases and water bottles have been dug up.

The Prime Minister made an unequivocal commitment to protect Anzac Cove. He said on 19 December 2003, "I have no doubt that the Turkish Government will give permission".

Anzac Cove is more than a heritage site – it is a sacred site for all Australians, which has been left vulnerable by the complacency of the Howard Government.