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Aboriginal diggers commemorate Anzac Day

An Anzac Day service in the Sydney suburb of Redfern will be held to commemorate Aboriginal diggers reported AAP on Livenews on Saturday, 25 April 2009.

An estimated 500 to 800 Aboriginal diggers served in World War I, NSW Community Services Minister Linda Burney says.

On Saturday, Aboriginal war veterans will gather at The Block, Redfern, at 1pm (AEST).

They will then march to Redfern Park via Lawson and Redfern Streets.

At Redfern Park a commemoration service will be held and an elders "yarn tent" will house a cultural performance.

Although Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander diggers have fought for Australia in overseas conflicts, they have not always been included in the Anzac Day legend, Ms Burney says.

"For a time Aboriginal diggers were not permitted to march with their comrades on Anzac Day, or to join with them in after-march events.

"They were not even allowed to enter RSL clubs."

"Aboriginal servicemen and women are now rightfully part of this tradition and it will be a great honour for me to be present at this important ceremony."