Ja­panese records shed light on Mon­te­v­ideo mys­tery

Townsville Bulletin - - National Snapshot -

REL­A­TIVES of more than 1000 Aus­tralians lost dur­ing World War II are hop­ing Ja­panese pris­oner-of-war records will shed fresh light on Aus­tralia’s worst-ever mar­itime disas­ter.

Prisoners of war and civil­ian in­ternees were aboard the Ja­panese freighter Mon­te­v­ideo Maru when it was tor­pe­doed by a US sub­ma­rine in June 1942. For three-and-a-half years no word of the sink­ing reached Aus­tralia, with fam­i­lies be­liev­ing their loved ones re­mained alive in Ja­panese cap­tiv­ity. Even now, it’s not known ex­actly who or how many were aboard.

But Ja­pan’s de­ci­sion, an­nounced at the week­end, to hand over records of Aus­tralian PoWs could solve this mys­tery.

The records might shed light on the fate of the mem­bers of Lark Force, many of whom were lost on Mon­te­v­ideo Maru.

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