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RAF in Singapore lay wreath to honour World War Two casualites

Royal Air Force personnel on Exercise Suman Protector in Singapore have been joined by colleagues from Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand and Singapore to pay respects at the Kranji War Cemetery.

The cemetery is home to the graves of 4,400 Commonwealth casualties from World War Two, and a memorial to more than 24,000 Allied soldiers and airmen killed in Southeast Asia during the same war who have no known grave, with their names listed on the adjacent 24-metre-high Singapore Memorial.

Exercise Suman Protector takes place every five years and this year has more than 260 military personnel from Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the United Kingdom practicing their response to various scenarios – focusing on collaboration, decision-making and command structures. Known as a Command Post Exercise, it involves the five nations that make up the Five Power Defence Arrangements, known as FPDA.

I was deeply honoured to lay the wreath in today’s ceremony in commemoration of all those who lost their lives while serving their country. It is even more poignant as we move closer to the Festival of Remembrance and are so far from home.

We are supported today by military personnel from the nations that make up the Five Power Defence Arrangements, making for a truly unique experience.

Wing Commander Garvey
UK Detachment Commander

The Five Power Defence Arrangements, agreed in 1971, is a commitment by Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the United Kingdom to cooperate in security matters such as humanitarian assistance, disaster relief, counter-terrorism and airspace security.

Image shows RAF aviators paying respects at the stone memorial.
RAF Personnel at the memorial.

The Kranji War Memorial was built in 1946 and the inscription on the main wall states:

"On the walls of this memorial are recorded

the names of twentyfour thousand soldiers and airmen

of many races united in service to the British Crown

who gave their lives in Malaya and neighbouring lands and seas

and in the air over Southern and Eastern Asia and the Pacific

but to whom the fortune of war

denied the customary rites

accorded to their comrades in death

They died for all free men."