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Documents Relating to New Zealand's Participation in the Second World War 1939–45: Volume II

329 — General Freyberg to the Minister of Defence

General Freyberg to the Minister of Defence

3 August 1944

During the past week the Division has made considerable advances south of Florence and the forward troops are now in sight of the city. Enemy rearguards have fought stubbornly for every piece of high ground covering the approaches to the Arno River. He has been forced to expose his troops, however, and has suffered severely under our heavy artillery bombardment and in costly counter-attacks. Our own casualties have not been light. The approximate figures up to 1 August inclusive, for the operations south of Florence are: killed 126, wounded 575, missing 39.

I felt you would like a short report on the position in view of the BBC reports on the fighting. I will send a further report when Florence has fallen.