Australia finds a WW2 ship – level 3

25-04-2023 15:00

On Saturday, Australia’s Defence Minister Richard Marles announced that the wreck of the SS Montevideo Maru, a Japanese merchant ship sunk in World War Two with 864 Australian soldiers on board,

had been found in the South China Sea. The finding ended a tragic chapter of the country’s history.

The ship was sunk off the Philippines’ coast in July 1942 and was torpedoed en route from Papua New Guinea to China’s Hainan by a US submarine, unaware of the POWs onboard. The shipwreck was discovered at a depth of more than 4,000 meters, and it was found ahead of Anzac Day, a day of remembrance for the Australian and New Zealand troops killed in all military conflicts.

The search was led by a maritime archaeology not-for-profit and deep-sea survey specialists, and supported by Australia’s Defence Department. Over 1,000 men, including POWs and civilians from several countries, are believed to have died in the tragedy.

Difficult words: torpedo (to attack or sink a ship with an underwater rocket), en route (on the way), POW (a person who surrenders to the enemy in time of war).

You can watch the video news lower on this page.

What efforts have been made by the Australian Defence Department to officially recognise and commemorate the men who lost their lives on the SS Montevideo Maru?


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