DPAA Ceremony Honors American Servicemen: Papua New Guinea Repatriation, 2019
Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea: The Government of the United States of America hosted a repatriation ceremony for the remains of service members killed in action in Papua New Guinea during World War II. The U.S. Department of Defense Prisoner of War/Missing in Action (POW/MIA) Accounting Agency (DPAA) recovered the remains and will return them to the United States. The brief ceremony paid tribute to the valor of those lost and underlined how their sacrifice reinforced the enduring tie between the people of the United States and Papua New Guinea.
U.S. Ambassador Catherine Ebert-Gray, representatives from foreign diplomatic missions, and members of the PNG Defense Force, participated in the event at the VIP Terminal (APEC Lounge) of Jacksons International Airport on Monday, June 10.
The ceremony follows a successful investigation and recovery mission on Kovu village, Gulf province, and a series of missions carried throughout the course of the year on East Sepik, Morobe, and Northern (Oro) provinces. The United States remains committed to achieving the fullest possible accounting of Americans lost during the Second World War.
DPAA conducts global search, recovery, and laboratory operations to identify unaccounted-for Americans from past conflicts in order to support the U.S. Department of Defense’s personnel accounting efforts. In order to ensure mission success and the return of unaccounted-for Americans, DPAA routinely engages in technical negotiations and talks with representatives of foreign governments to promote and maintain positive in-country conditions wherever DPAA teams deploy. DPAA works closely with host nation officials and local or regional government representatives during all investigative and recovery missions. The cooperation and joint efforts of organizations like the PNG National Museum University of Papua New Guinea are essential for DPAA to accomplish its mission.