Australian PM in Israel for enactment of Battle of Beersheba centenary

“This was the last successful cavalry charge,” said Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull of the audacious frontal assault 100 years ago by 800 Australian and New Zealand light horsemen on the 4,000 Turkish defenders of Beersheba. Their victory enabled British Empire forces to break the Ottoman line near Gaza and advance into Palestine. Tuesday, 100 volunteer Australian riders in period uniform are in Beersheba to stage a reenactment of the charge and attend a memorial ceremony at the Beersheba Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery.
Turnbull came for the event despite political turmoil in Canberra. With him was opposition leader Bill Shorten.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said the heroic cavalry charge was the gateway to the ‘rebirth’ of the Jewish people and warmly praised Turnbull as a “true friend of Israel.” Answering reporters’ questions after meeting with Netanyahu, the Australian prime minister said they had discussed defense, cyber security, economics and history.

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