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    Antsiranana (Diego-Suarez) Diana Region Madagascar (Republic of Madagascar)

Location
Lat 12° 17' 3S Long 49° 17' 29E  Diego-Suarez is located at the northern tip of Madagascar bordering Diego Suarez Bay (Antsiranana Bay). To the east is Oronjia Pass. Today known as Antsiranana.

Prewar
Following the Franco-Hova, given to France on December 17, 1885. Developed by the French into a naval base.

Wartime History
After the German occupation of France in May 1940, French Madagascar was controlled by Vichy France. The British planed to occupy Madagascar to deprive the island from the Axis.

On May 5, 1942 the British launched "Operation Ironclad" landing the British Army 29th Infantry Brigade and No. 5 Commandos at Courrier Bay and Ambararata Bay with reinforcements landed from the 5th Infantry Division and Royal Marines. Until the next day, the French successfully defended until HMS Anthony managed to land 50 Royal Marines in a rear area and broke the defense resulting in the surrender of the town on May 7, 1942. After the battle, on May 19, 1942 two brigades of the 5th Infantry Division departed for India.

On May 29, 1942 Japanese submarines I-10, I-16 and I-20 are in position to attack Diego-Suarez. I-10 launches her reconnaissance floatplane and sights HMS Ramillies, destroyers HMS Duncan, HMS Active, corvettes HMS Genista and HMS Thyme, troopship HMS Karanja, hospital ship HMS Atlantis, MV British Loyalty, merchant MV Llandaff Castle and an ammunition ship. Afterwards, I-16 and I-20 each launch their Type A Midget Submarines, one aboard the other fires both her torpedoes that damages HMS Ramillies and sinks MV British Loyalty.

On June 8, 1942 , the East Africa 22nd Brigade Group arrived and the 7th South African Motorized Brigade arrived on 24 June. On August 8, 1942 North Rhodesia 27th Infantry Brigade arrived.

Postwar
France continued to use the city as a military base after Malagasy independence in 1960 until the socialist revolution of 1973.

Today
In 1975, renamed Antsiranana and became the capital of Diana Region.

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Last Updated
February 4, 2018

 

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