Minister honours NZ Korean War vets

Veterans' Affairs Minister Judith Collins today praised veterans of the Korean War which started 60 years ago today.

On June 25, 1950 troops from North Korea invaded South Korea. The United Nations Security Council asked its members to assist South Korea and New Zealand was one of the first countries to respond.

The Government initially provided two frigates, followed by a volunteer force of 1000 men known as Kayforce.

"The Kiwis showed courage in the face of constant danger, both on land and at sea, during this cold and bloody war," Ms Collins said.

"Today I honour their service, and pay tribute to the 45 Kiwis who lost their lives in Korea."

Over the course of the war more than 4700 New Zealanders served as a part of Kayforce. Another 1350 New Zealanders were deployed with the Royal New Zealand Navy.

"We honour those New Zealanders lost in battle. We also remember the two New Zealanders taken prisoner of war and held in northern North Korea until the signing of the Armistice."

- NZPA

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