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Essay competition: winners will visit Korea

Essay competition to find young New Zealanders to visit Korea

Prime Minister Helen Clark today announced an essay-writing competition aimed at choosing four secondary school students to travel to Korea in July to mark the 50th anniversary of the signing of the armistice in Korea.

The students will be part of an official New Zealand delegation involving government representatives, veterans, and New Zealand Defence Force personnel who will travel to Korea for the commemoration and participate in the ceremonies.

The Korean War began on 25 June, 1950. New Zealand was one of fifteen countries which contributed to the United Nations force which assisted South Korea in the conflict. In all, about 4700 New Zealanders served in Kayforce in Korea, along with a further 1300 on New Zealand frigates, during the seven years of New Zealand’s involvement between 1950 and 1957. A total of 33 New Zealanders lost their lives during the war in Korea and 81 were wounded.

“I am keen to encourage a greater interest in New Zealand’s history among young people. The Korean War had a significant impact on New Zealand, militarily, economically and socially,” Helen Clark said.

The essay competition is open to students of 15 years of age and over. They will be asked to write a thousand word essay on one of five topics.

The questions will be included in an information pack sent to schools through the Office of Veterans’ Affairs.

For more information on the competition or a copy of the entry form, contact Veterans’ Affairs New Zealand on 0800-483 8372 or mailto: mailto:veterans@xtra.co.nz.

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