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Dr Ray Kerkhove Historian specialising in Aboriginal history

Dr Ray Kerkhove is a professional historian and ethno-historian (accredited through Professional Historians Association Queensland), specializing in 19th Century Aboriginal social history and material culture, mostly for southern Queensland.  Ray was born in the Netherlands and migrated to Sydney with his family at the age of 4. They arrived with

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Dutch Australians at a Glance – Exhibition: People Movement Stories

DAAAG was created to be an accessible, easy to navigate, multimedia internet service dedicated to the sustainable digital preservation of Dutch Australians’ cultural heritage – for use by scholars, researchers, bureaucrats, journalists, Dutch individuals and other digital end users worldwide. DAAAG is an initiative of the History of Migration Experiences

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Huygens Institute – The Netherlands

The Huygens Institute aims to make Dutch history and culture more inclusive. It also provides access to primary source material and text editions on which to base further analytical and interpretive research. In addition, the Huygens Institute takes the lead in developing innovative methods, tools and sustainable digital infrastructure. The

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Indonesian War Graves at Cowra (Netherlands East indies)

When the Japanese invaded the Dutch East Indies, some 20,000 Dutch and Indonesians (Netherlands East Indies – NEI) fled to Australia. As Australia had a strict White Australian Policies, native people from NEI where housed separately. Of them 1,200 Indonesian internees were held at the Cowra POW Camp during WWII.

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Dutch War Cemetery Perth incl. names of people killed

This is the only official Dutch War Cemetery in Australia. It is only one of three non Commonwealth War Cemeteries in Australia, the other two being the Tatura (German) War Cemetery in Victoria (250 graves) and the Cowra (Japanese) War Cemetery in New South Wales (523). At Cowra the Dutch

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Professor Klaas Woldring – reflecting on Australian politics

Biography This is a personal story from Associate Professor Klaas Woldring the author of six short books on democracy and political changes that are needed in Australia to move forward. Klaas was born on 2nd July 1934 in Groningen He went to Highschool there, completed two years compulsory military service, worked

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Jan Zevenboom from gold-digger to Vice Consul (1856)

Jan Zevenboom born in 1822. He arrived in Melbourne from Amsterdam in 1856 his profession was listed as brush-maker. He travelled straight on the gold fields, but apparently was not lucky enough to become rich. He settled in Melbourne taking up his trade as a brush-maker in Beckett Street.

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Glen op den Brouw awarded the Order of Liverpool (Sydney)

The following is an interview with Glen published in October 2018 in the Daily Telegraph. A link to the Article is provided underneath, Liverpool Historical Society president Glen op den Brouw reflects on what he loves about Liverpool. 1. When did you move to this suburb and why? After migrating

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Student exchange collaboration Universities of Utrecht and Sydney

In early November 2022 a delegation of Utrecht University, including the Rector Magnificus Prof Dr Henk Kummeling and Margot van Sluis-Barten, director External Relations, visited the University of Sydney to discuss cooperation and a student exchange programme. It was agreed that there will be a large number of student exchanges

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Emigrant story – Joop Mul

I was born in Gouda, the Netherlands during World War II. I migrated to Australia at the age of 12, on the migrant ship Johan van Oldenbarneveld in 1956. My parents thought they would find a house and work easily in Perth but, after a brief talk with the family

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Jacqueline van der Bie a Hoekse Waardse in Australia

Back in 2003 Jacqueline Fortuin started an adventure with her husband and two small children:they went for a trip Down Under and did not expect to still be there 20 years later…Jacqueline grew up in a small village in the Hoeksche Waard in The Netherlands, went on to studylaw at

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Long agriculture history between Australia and the Netherlands

Being the 2nd largest export of agriculture products, The Netherlands has a very long relationship with Australia in relation to agriculture. Already in the 1970 the Netherlands participated in agriculture events in Orange NSW. Further down below is an article from the Washington Post providing an overall state of the

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Dutch Camp Casino WWII – Archive Jan de Wit

This post contains a unique collection of archives kept by Jan (John) de Wit. Jan joined the Dutch Airforce and became a guard at the Dutch Camp in Casino NSW. There were uprisings in the camp and people were killed. This became an embarrassment for Australia. The Australian Unions played a key role here as well.

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Black Armada: Australian Boycott of Dutch shipping WWII

After the Japanese invasion of Netherlands East Indies, some 20,000 Dutch people fled to Australia, the majority were Indos. They were not well treated and the Australian Unions started to fight for their rights. As they became involved they understood these people wanted independence from the Netherlands. When, after the War, the Dutch wanted to recolonise NEI the Unions blocked all Dutch transport from Australia.

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Philips in Australia

Looking for more information. Philips opened its first office in North Ryde, NSW in 1927, with seven staff members. Later they established a factory in Camperdown for the production radiosets and radio kits later followed by lightbulbs . During WWII the company produced electronica and navigation equipment for the Australian

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Heineken Tennis Tournament – Sydney 11 December

Back on! After missing out on two Heineken Tennis Tournaments in 2020 and 2021 due to Covid and the renovations of Primrose Park Tennis, Dutchlink is very pleased to invite you to the Dutchlink Heineken Tennis Tournament 2022 version which will take place on Sunday 11 December 2022.We’re back on

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Hans de Vries Flight Lieutenant No. 18 Squadron NEI / RAAF

When the war reached Java, he fled on the merchant ship the KPM SS Boissevain to Freemantle. He was despatched to the RAAF training camp near Lake Macquarie and from here he was send to the Jackson, Mississippi to be trained on the B25 bombers. He was assigned to the No. 18 Squadron NEI / RAAF operating from the Batchelor Airfield, Northern Territory. He flew bombing missions against Japanese military strongholds and shipping. He was highly decorated.

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Dirk Hartog and the famous Hartog Plate

Dirk Hartog Dirk Hartog (baptised 30 October 1580 – buried 11 October 1621) was a 17th-century Dutch sailor and explorer. Dirk Hartog’s expedition was the second European group to land in Australia and the first to leave behind an artefact to record his visit, the Hartog Plate. His name is

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Dutch internees from Japanese camps and POWs received medical recuperation in Australia

There were some of 42 000 Dutch military and naval personnel and 100 000 Dutch civilians who were captured when the Japanese conquered the Netherlands East Indies in early 1942. After the War around 6,000 internees and Dutch POWs who needed immediate medical assistance were brought to Australia where they were allowed to recuperate for between 3 to 6 months, after which they were either repatriated to the Netherlands or went back to Netherlands East Indies.

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Abraham Crijnssen – Dutch minesweeper in the service of the Australian Navy (WWII)

The ship was built during the 1930s, she was based in the Netherlands East Indies when Japan attacked at the end of 1941. After the Japanese invasion the ship left for Australia. For its escape the ship was painted in camouflage colours and the ship was disguised as a tropical island with the help of nets, branches, and other greenery. It arrived in Geraldton. Here the ship served as a patrol vessel until 16 August 1942. After that the ship was in service with the Australian Navy.

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Dutch immigrant ship Willem Ruys

Royal Rotterdamsche Lloyd (then Nedlloyd and now part of Maersk) started building the ship in 1938. The company  was in the process to replace the aging fleet of ships on the Dutch East Indies route, her keel was laid in 1939 at De Schelde shipyard in Vlissingen, Netherlands. Interrupted by

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Dutch immigrant ships to Australia

The following information is available on the DACC database. The major ships bringing Dutch migrants to Australia include: De Groote Beer Johan van Oldenbarnevelt Volendam Nelly, Sibajak Skaubryn Waterman Zuiderkruis Willem Ruys See also: Steam Shipping Lines Australia – Netherlands – starting in 1864 Other Research information: Passengers list: National

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Dutch immigrant ship Johan van Oldenbarnevelt

When she was built in 1929, she was the largest ship yet built in the Netherlands. She had berths for 770 passengers: 366 in first class, 280 in second, 64 in third and 60 in fourth class. She had berths for 360 crew. She had four decks and could carry

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Sailing on the Duyfken – new Channel 7 story on the Duyfken

The first documented and undisputed European sighting of and landing in Australia was in late February 1606, by the Dutch navigator Willem Janszoon aboard the Duyfken. Janszoon charted the Australian coast and met with Aboriginal people. Janszoon followed the coast of New Guinea, missed Torres Strait, and explored and then

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Dutch Steamer Curaçao visits Australia in 1871

Reports concerning New South Wales, Queensland, the northern territory of South Australia (which then incorporated the Northern Territory), New Guinea and the Torres Strait by J.W. Ploos van Amstel, Consul-General of the Netherlands for Australia, New Zealand and Tasmania. Ploos van Amstel’s accounts are signed Cardwell [North Queensland]; Sweers Island

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Dutch Treat by Theodora Biesheuvel

Theodora (Thea) Biesheuvel – was born in Schiedam, Netherlands in 1939 and emigrated to Australia in 1953. She grew up in country Australia. She has written poetry since she was 8 but started short story writing as an adjunct to telling stories.

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Consul General Bosschart promotes trade with Queensland – 1908

The Week Brisbane 16 October 1908 Java and Australia. Fostering Relations. Netherlands Consul-General. As stated in our first edition, Mr. W. L. Bosschart, Netherlands Consul-General for Australia and Polynesia, whose legation is situated at Melbourne, is returning from a visit to the Dutch East Indies by the steamer Van Spilbergen

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Willem Frans Theodoor Brijl – merchant captain WWII

Willem Frans Theodoor Brijl was born May 17th, 1897 in Surabaya in the Dutch East-Indies, the son of Frans Hendrik Brijl. In 1910 he left for the Netherlands in order to have his HBS education. September 21st, 1914 he enrolled in the Merchant Navy Academy on the island of Texel.

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Some members of the18 Squadron NEI RAAF

See the profiles and stories of Joop van Doorn and Hans de Vries and Max Horstink. Click here for more information on the 18 Squadron Nederlands East Indies Royal Australia Air Force The following information with thanks to TracesOfWar. Sidney Rudi de Kadt evaded from occupied country the Netherlands to

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Sparrow Force – Allied guerrilla force in Timor WWII

Sparrow Force was a detachment based on the 2/40th Australian Infantry Battalion and other Dutch, British, US and Australian 8th Division units during World War II. The force was formed to defend the island of Timor from invasion by the Empire of Japan. It formed the main part of the

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Major Jan Willem Zijlstra – Sparrow Force Timor WWII

Military record Born in Malang, Java, on 27 December 1910. Died at “Ladang” House, near Berry, New South Wales, Australia, on October 6, 1965. Army number 102417002 Second lieutenant KNIL Army (31-07-1932),  First Lieutenant (31-07-1935),  Captain. (27-05-1943), Major (17-12-1949).   Well-known decorations: ·         Ereteken Belangrijke/Bijzondere Krijgsbedrijven/-verrichtingen BK,E.1,OHK.3,OV.1,XV,KLO·         Bronze Cross K.B.

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The Battle of Timor – 1942-1943

The Battle of Timor – the Dutch and Australians kept fighting after the surrender of Netherlands East Indies. The bombing of Darwin did bring WWII directly onto the shores of Australia. However, what is less well known is that the reason for the Japanese attack on Darwin and Broome was

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Netherlands – Australia Memorial – Canberra

The monument commemorates the servicemen and women of the Dutch forces which operated from Australia between 1941 and 1945. The Dutch, along with the Americans, were the only non-Commonwealth countries to establish bases in Australia during World War Two. The original memorial was unveiled on the 7th December 1991 and

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Mutiny on the Tasmanian ferry Abel Tasman -1985

The following is an abstract – with permission – from the Mitchell Bruce’s website Ferries of Australia Abel Tasman (IMO 7362108) sailed on the Bass Strait between 1985 to 1993. She started life as the Nils Holgersson, built in 1975. She commenced her regular route, linking Travemünde (Germany) to Trelleborg

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Various ships named Abel Tasman

Abel Tasman – Bermuda Schooner This Bermuda Schooner, derived from the famous “America 1”, designed by George Steer. From this renowned fast yacht from the mid-19th century a few replicas have been built. Though “Abel Tasman” is not a pure replica, she has the same lines. She has been proven

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Dutch and Australian Relics from Camp Columbia Brisbane

Camp Columbia in the suburb of Wacol in Brisbane was a United States Army military camp. It was built in 1942 to accommodate American troops. The Sixth US Army Headquarters was formed and stationed here. It also hosted two hospitals and an Officer Candidate School till 1945.  This was the

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Netherlands Antilles ship capsized in Port Kembla (1986)

Shortly before noon on Thursday 14 August 1986 the Netherlands Antilles flag heavy lift cargo ship ‘GABRIELLA’ capsized and sank alongside No. 2 Products Berth in Port Kembla harbour New South Wales. The ship capsized and sank on its side very rapidly while discharging a lift of 237.95 tonnes. Two

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Rembrandt Dutch Club – Sydney

Founded in 1978 We are open every Wednesday from 10am till 1pm and every Friday from 3.30pm till 8.30pm. Our Club is run purely by volunteers, from the barman to the cleaner, the chef and the gardener. The Club has several interest groups: Klaverjassers and  Scrabblers. It’s a friendly place

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Merchant ship SS Van Heemskerk tragically lost in 1943

(Source: Wikipedia) SS Van Heemskerk was a freighter built by N.V. Nederlandsche Scheepsbouw-Maatschappij. The ship of 2,996 Gross register tonnage (GRT) was launched 31 August 1909 and delivered for operation by Koninklijke Paketvaart-Maatschappij (KPM) in the Dutch East Indies trade. Van Heemskerk was one of twenty-one KPM vessels that took

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Dutch Hydrogen Fuel Cell plant being built in Queensland

Nedstack Australia to receive $825,000 from the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre to develop Australia’s first hydrogen utility scale PEM fuel cell in collaboration with LAVO. This will be the world-first Hydrogen Energy Storage System. Nedstack is a leading player in the Proton-exchange membrane fuel cells (PEM fuel cell)  industry with

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Netherlands Association of Queensland

It all started in 1952. Four Dutch men, recently arrived in Australia, started a `Klaverjas’ (Dutch card game-only known in the Netherlands) club. A constitution was sent to Fair Trading Queensland. Approval was received on the 6 July 1952 and the Netherlands Association of Queensland got incorporated and known as

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When the Dutch in Bundaberg faced Communist threat

By  Michael Gorey  22 April 2019 In Anzac week we reflect on the contribution our allies made to restoring peace in our region. No. 19 (Netherlands East Indies) Squadron RAAF was a transport and communications unit of the Militaire Luchtvaart van het Koninklijk Nederlands-Indisch Leger. The Netherlands East Indies Government

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The Drama of Broome 3-3-1942

On 3 March 1942 Japanese Zero bombers arrived and within 15 minutes bombed 23 Alied aircrafts that were either laying in the Roebuck bay or which were parked on the aerodrome. Approx half of them were NEI airplanes,  between 35 and 40 Dutch people were killed in the raid and some 60+ were badly injured.

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Patricia Metcalfe and Wim van Wely met at Camp Columbia.

Patricia (Pat) Metcalfe (born 1929 in Cairns) moved to Brisbane when she was 4 years old and after she finished the St Columba school at Wilson, was employed at Camp Columbia as a typist and secretary, first with the Americans and since 1945 with the Netherlands-East-Indies Government. Here she worked

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Shell Australia – since 1901

Shell Australia is the Australian subsidiary of Shell. Shell has operated in Australia since 1901, initially delivering bulk fuel into Australia, then establishing storage and distribution terminals, oil refineries, and a network of service stations. It extended its Australian activities to oil exploration, petrochemicals and coal mining, and became a

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New Netherlands Consul General and Deputy Consul General

The team at the Netherlands Consulate General in Sydney welcomed the new Consul General, Hugo Klijn, and new Deputy Consul-General, Meike de Jong. Consul-General Hugo Klijn is also Head of Economic affairs, Trade and Investment in Australia. Mr Klijn has been working for the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs since

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Dutch-Australian ballerinas performing for WWII Allied troops

Born as Maria Louisa Frederika, “Darja” Collin (November 19, 1902 – May 6, 1967) was a Dutch ballet dancer and classical ballet teacher. She had been trained in classical ballet (studying under Preobrajenska and Trefilova), and also in Mary Wigman’s school. She was also influenced by the famous American/Russian dancer

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Dutch participation in Battle of Milne Bay 1942

Most of the vital reinforcement of New Guinea in 1942 and 1943 –  during the War in the South West Pacific – including troops, vehicles, weapons and supplies for the Milne Bay, Buna and Gona operations, was undertaken by Dutch vessels. The operation collectively known as Operation Lilliput, used the

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A very personal WWII story from Ruth Leah

Our mother met a Dutch pilot during the war.  His name was Fredrik (Pulk) Pelder and there are many mentions of his heroics on the World Wide web.  One instance in particular that was widely publicised, was an escape from Java where Fred and Mendizabal (Canadian), Sgt Stuart Munroe (Australian), Alan

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Migration Museum Rotterdam – opens in 2024

The museum is based in the Fenix warehouse at the waterfront on Katendrecht. It was built in 1923. At that time it was the largest warehouse in the world. The new FENIX is more than a museum it is a cultural location in Rotterdam. From its quays millions of Europeans

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120 Netherlands East Indies Squadron RAAF – WWII

The No. 120 (Netherlands East Indies) Squadron RAAF was formed at RAAF base Fairbairn in Canberra on 10 December 1943. As a joint Australian-Dutch unit, the Dutch authorities provided all the squadron’s aircrew and aircraft while the RAAF provided its ground crew. This arrangement had been previously used for No.

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The Night Ship – Novel about the Batavia

A new book has been published about the doomed fate of the VOC ship the Batavia in 1629. In this case the historical story forms the background to fiction through the eyes of 9 year old Dutch girl Mayken. Read the review of ”The Night Ship” by Jess Kidd as

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Dutch-Australian Movie  –“ Everybody’s Oma”

Everybody’s Oma follows in the NSW Central Coast family’s footsteps as they navigate Oma’s failing health under the spotlight of an enthusiastic audience of well-meaning strangers. Jason van Genderen premiered My Town is Broken at Sydney Film Festival (SFF)  2008. His debut feature Everybody’s Oma premieres at SFF 14 years

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The Merauke Force in Dutch New Guinea – WWII

Merauke remained unoccupied during WWII In mid-1942, Merauke, on the south coast of Dutch New Guinea (DNG) was one of only a few parts of the Netherlands East Indies ( NEI) that had not been occupied by Japanese forces. It was garrisoned by a company of infantry from the KNIL,

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Abel Tasman Museum Lutjegast, Netherlands

The DACC has special relationship with the Abel Tasman Museum in Lutjegast, a town in Groningen, where Abel Tasman was born. There have been visits from Australian to Lutjegast and the other way around. There is more information on their website. The images below are displays from the Abel Tasman

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ML-KNIL Dakota crashed in Moreton Bay – 1947

On 26 February, a ML-KNIL Douglas Dakota caught fire and crashed into the ocean about 23 minutes into a test flight from Archerfield, killing all six people – three Dutch servicemen and three Australian crew members – onboard. ML-KNIL = Militaire Luchtvaart van het Koninklijk Nederlands-Indisch Leger – Royal Netherlands

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Dutch Migrants at Bonegilla Migrant Camp – Victoria

Around 170,000 displaced persons came to Australia immediately after World War II. Nearly half lived at Bonegilla when they arrived in Australia. Some stayed for weeks, others for months. Migrants at the centre were taught English and learnt about life in Australia. They were then employed in areas where there were labour shortages, boosting

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