Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) spokesman Sok Eysan said on Sunday that an estimated 50,000-100,000 people will join the commemoration of the 41st anniversary of Victory Day to be held on Tuesday.
The event, which aims to recognise the Kingdom’s peace and development, will be celebrated at various locations in the country including the Koh Pich Convention and Exhibition Centre.
“The main political message is to celebrate and appreciate the peace, nationwide progress and political stability that we have so far enjoyed. Without these, the people could not have lived well or experienced growth in their livelihood,” he said.
Eysan also said Prime Minister Hun Sen will deliver a political message addressing the government’s plans and goals for furthering the country’s economy.
Security will be tightened for the people, senior officials, diplomatic corps and relevant participants who will be attending the celebration.
Lieutenant General Touch Naroth, the deputy National Police chief, said on Sunday that joint forces from the Military Police and Bodyguard Unit will be deployed to ensure the celebration proceeds smoothly.
Traffic arrangements in bus stops, safe entrances and exits will also be set. Flying of unauthorised drones will be banned – the drones will be seized if found.
“We have already prepared the forces for the 41st anniversary of Victory Day on Tuesday. We have 3,200 forces, which is enough to protect the participants,” said Naroth.
On Friday, Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng instructed district governors and police officials to clean the city, observe order around the venue where the ceremony will be held and maintain public safety.
“The municipal administration has to cooperate with the authorities to make the ceremony successful. Although ceremonies in the past had been held successfully, authorities should not slack off in protecting our citizens,” said Sreng.
Former lawmaker of the Supreme-Court dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party Ou Chanrath supported the commemoration of Victory Day, saying it marked the people’s victory over the genocide of the Khmer Rouge regime.
However, he also said the day paved way for Vietnam’s invasion of Cambodia.
“From my perspective, Vietnam’s rescue of Cambodia was just an excuse. We must ask where the Khmer Rouge was born, why did the genocide happen and who supported it.
“I don’t deny that Vietnam helped liberate Cambodia. Nevertheless, the underlying reasons for the events that transpired should have been revealed to the public,” he said.
But for Eysan, January 7 remains a day of celebration as it was when the Kampuchean United Front for National Salvation, with the support of the Vietnamese military, toppled the Khmer Rouge.
“This is the historical truth that cannot be erased. This truth must be preserved and upheld even though the opposition claims that it paved the way for Vietnam’s invasion. Though gold falls deeply into the mud, it is still the same gold,” said Eysan.