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Only 164 Australians sign up to attend ANZAC Day service at Gallipoli

Image: Australian War Memorial

Three years ago more than 8,000 Australians headed to Gallipoli to commemorate 100 years since our soldiers stormed ANZAC Cove.

This year, just 164 Australians have registered to attend the ANZAC Day ceremony on the Gallipoli peninsula, a mere 3.3% of potential capacity.

Michael McCormack, Minister for Veterans Affairs, tells Chris Smith attendance may have plummeted due to a renewed focus on Australian efforts in France during World War One.

“I think the rightful, respectful and dignified focus has shifted to Villers-Bretonneux and I think it’s great that people are recognising the Western Front.

“For far too long [Gallipoli] has taken almost all the focus and attention and perhaps rightly so… I think that it’s good and appropriate that Villers-Bretonneux will be getting the focus that it deserves.”

Mr McCormack doesn’t believe Australians have lost interest and respect for our soldiers who fought valiantly at Gallipoli.

“I know that ANZAC Day will leave a legacy, the respect will endure for as long as Australians draw breath.”

Click PLAY below for the full interview