Australians commemorate 103rd anniversary of Turkish battle

Thousands of Australians have gathered at pre-dawn services around the country to commemorate the moment when Australian and New Zealand Army Corps troops waded ashore at the Gallipoli peninsula in Turkey 103 years ago in their first major battle of World War I.

Because extremists have targeted annual ANZAC Day April 25 ceremonies in the past, concrete barriers were placed around the service in downtown Sydney to protect those who gathered at Martin Place against vehicle attacks.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, his French counterpart Edouard Philippe and the heir to the British throne, Prince Charles, will mark ANZAC Day in France with a service that also commemorates the 100th anniversary of Australian troops taking the town of Villers-Bretonneux from the Germans.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton represents the Australian government at a service at ANZAC Cove at Gallipoli where the Australian and New Zealand troops landed under British command in an ill-fated attempt to take the Ottoman Empire out of the war.

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