Expedition locates wreck of World War II-sunk ship Montevideo Maru
Monday, April 24, 2023
|A loss like this reaches down through the decades and reminds us all of the human cost of conflict. Lest we forget.|
—Lt. Gen. Simon Stuart
On Saturday (Friday Australian Deputy Prime Minister announced on Twitter a team led by the Australia-based Silentworld Foundation had located the South China Sea wreck of the . The ship was a Japanese merchant marine vessel carrying prisoners of war (POWs) when the United States torpedoed it in 1942, during World War II, killing 1,080.),
Accompanied by deep-sea specialists from Dutch company and supported by the , the Silentworld team searched for twelve days around Luzon using an equipped with .
On July 1, 1942, POWs captured in Papua New Guinea were to , which was under Japanese occupation, aboard the Montevideo Maru. The POWs were both civilians and military and were citizens of fourteen countries; 864 were of the .,
The ship was not marked as carrying POWs and a submarine of the United States Navy fired torpedoes at the ship, sinking it.
Efforts to recover human remains from the Montevideo Maru were not planned according to the Silentworld Foundation; however, the Foundation was considering commemorative events for July 1, the anniversary of the sinking.
"This brings to an end one of the most tragic chapters in Australia's maritime history," Marles said. "[Knowing] the location of this wreck provides comfort and relief to so many Australian families."
Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said: "The extraordinary effort behind this discovery speaks for the enduring truth of Australia's solemn national promise to always remember and honor those who served our country".
"I want to thank the Silentworld team and the dedicated researchers, including the Unrecovered War Casualties team at Army, who have never given up hope of finding the final resting place of the Montevideo Maru," Lieutenant Generalsaid. "A loss like this reaches down through the decades and reminds us all of the human cost of conflict. ."
- "Lost 52 Project announces discovery of wrecked sub near Okinawa" — Wikinews, November 13, 2019
- "Explorers find shipwreck thought to be massive WWII battleship Musashi" — Wikinews, March 4, 2015
- Rich Calder. "Explorers find WWII Japanese ship sunk with over 1,000 Allied POWs" — , April 22, 2023
- "FAQ of the Montevideo Maru" — , April 22, 2023 (date of access)
- Heather Law. "World War II shipwreck of SS Montevideo Maru, which sank with over 1,000 POWs, found in South China Sea" — , April 21, 2023
- Richard Marles. "For more than 80 years, hundreds of Australian families have waited for news of the Montevideo Maru" — , April 21, 2023 (Video)