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Military personnel remains to be brought home

On 10 April 2017, the Government offered the families of New Zealand Defence Force personnel and their dependants buried in military burials in Malaysia and Singapore the opportunity to repatriate these personnel at public expense.

The Chief of Defence Force will manage the repatriation project with support from other agencies as required. Planning and scoping the project will begin mid-2017.

The Government has also asked the New Zealand Defence Force to consider extending this policy to cover other post-1954 military burials, and to report back to Cabinet with a proposal.

What are the next steps?

The decision about repatriation lies with the deceased Service person’s family. An offer will be made to those whose family members are buried in Singapore or Malaysia. If a family does not wish to repatriate, the deceased Service person’s grave will continue to be looked after as it has been until now.

The New Zealand Defence Force will do more work to explore the option of extending the offer of repatriation to the families of other New Zealanders interred overseas as a result of a military burial since 1 January 1955.

Do you have a family member buried overseas?

Those who have family members buried in Malaysia and Singapore as a result of a military burial are encouraged to register with the New Zealand Defence Force by:

Related links

Read the Minister’s media release. (external link)

Consideration by Veterans Advisory Board of repatriation policy. (external link)

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