Statement - Government of Canada marks anniversary of Commonwealth War Graves Commission

OTTAWA, May 19, 2017 /CNW/ - The Honourable Kent Hehr, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence, and Brigadier General (ret'd) David Kettle, Secretary General of the Canadian Agency of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, today issued the following statement on the occasion of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission's centennial anniversary:

"On May 21, 1917, a Royal Charter established the Imperial War Graves Commission, later to become known as the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Its values and aims, laid out in 1917, remain as relevant today as they were 100 years ago and guide this special organization in marking and maintaining Commonwealth graves from both the First and Second World Wars.

"They ensure that 1.7 million war dead in more than 150 countries have a final place of rest. There are more than 935,000 known graves in the Commission's 2,500 war cemeteries and plots, or within some 20,000 other burial grounds worldwide. The remaining 760,000 who have no known grave, are listed on one of the many memorials to the missing, which are placed in locations appropriate to the relevant theatres of war in which the deaths occurred.

"Sunday, we will proudly recognize their remarkable efforts. The work they have done over the last century has helped ensure that the 1.7 million Commonwealth service members who died during the First and Second World Wars will never be forgotten."


SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada

For further information: Media Relations, Veterans Affairs Canada, 613-992-7468,; Media Relations, Commonwealth War Graves Commission, 613-421-3364,


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