Culture and Heritage Minister Christopher Finlayson expressed his disgust at protestors who chose to use the National War Memorial in Wellington for political campaigning this morning by hanging a banner from the carillon in Wellington.
“The National War Memorial commemorates all those soldiers who died protecting our freedom,” Mr Finlayson said, “and to see it defiled for political reasons is offensive to the whole community no matter what an individual’s political beliefs.”
“The memorial, which is home to the carillon, cenotaph and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, serves as a focus point for the solemn remembrance of brave New Zealanders who fought for this country and its values. It is not a place for the shrill, attention seeking antics of people who would never have the courage to do the same.”
“They should be ashamed of their actions.”
A protest banner was placed on the carillon this morning. It was removed shortly afterwards by contractors, who are currently undertaking earthquake strengthening work on the memorial. The barrier around the carillon and the associated scaffolding will be heightened in order to prevent further access, for safety reasons.