The efforts of a Royal New Zealand Defence Force Officer to visit Gallipoli to mark the 100th Anniversary ANZAC Day 2015 have proved to be futile.
Miralem Musovich, who served the Royal New Zealand Army from 1969 and later the Royal New Zealand Air Force and Royal Australian Air Force, had applied to the New Zealand and Australian Governments to attend the ANZAC Day Service in Gallipoli next year. He was the first New Zealand Muslim to join the Royal New Zealand Army.
He has been waitlisted by both countries and may make his own way to Turkey through to get the Navy records of his father and catch with his extended family.
Miralem’s father Avdo Musovich served in the Turkish Navy in the 1940s.
He was a prominent member of the New Zealand Muslim Association from the 1950s to 1980s. He was the Vice-president of the Ponsonby Islamic Centre and helped to construct the first Mosque in the area.
If there was one man in New Zealand who ticked all the right boxes for a seat at the Gallipoli memorial next year, it would be Miralem.
I hope that someone who reads this report would do the needful.
Hajji Abdullah Drury is the author of ‘Islam in New Zealand.’ He lives in Hamilton. The above article was based on his understanding of the situation and he acknowledges that there could have been developments unknown to him. He can be contacted by email firstname.lastname@example.org