20 October 2014
President Benigno S. Aquino III led the 70th anniversary celebration of the Leyte Gulf Landing in Palo, Leyte.
In honor of the heroism and comradery of the allied troops who valiantly forced their way to the Philippine shore, President Aquino encouraged everyone not just to pay tribute to those who fought or died, but also to honor the peace they have fought or died for.
“Let us renew our commitment to the strong and enduring friendships between the Philippines and its wartime allies, and perhaps most meaningfully, the countries that were once its foes,” the President said.
Led by United States General Douglas MacArthur, the allied amphibious forces stormed the island of Leyte on October 20, 1944 to liberate the Philippines and end Japanese imperialism. The campaign for liberation fired an epic battle which was labeled as one of the biggest naval wars in history: the Battle of Leyte Gulf.
The President was joined by different ambassadors and representatives from the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and their former World War II adversary, Japan, in a wreath-laying ceremony at the MacArthur Landing Memorial National Park. Several Filipino and allied forces veterans from World War II were also present in the event.