Minister of National Defence Tea Banh expressed confidence in hosting the 12th ASEAN Para Games, following the “success” of the recently concluded 32nd SEA Games.

He said both events’ achievements would be commemorated at the Win-Win Monument, serving as inspiration for future generations.

Tea Banh assured that the Para Games would be held similarly to the SEA Games, with only minor adjustments to the event if necessary, and highlighted the solemnity of the opening and closing ceremonies.

During a meeting at the Morodok Techo National Stadium in Phnom Penh on May 26, Tea Banh addressed the differences between the two biennial multi-sport events, acknowledging the unique challenges faced by disabled athletes.

He revealed that 11 countries and over 2,600 sporting delegates are expected to participate in the ASEAN 12th Para Games, which, although fewer in number compared to the SEA Games, would still showcase Cambodia’s ability to host significant international events while promoting peace and resilience after years of civil war.

The Para Games will welcome 2,692 sports delegates from 11 countries, including 145 athletes and 1,239 technical officials. Notably, Thailand, Indonesia and Cambodia will have the largest athlete representations with 304,275 and 253 participants, respectively.

Prime Minister Hun Sen expressed his optimism for the Cambodian athletes to secure more gold medals during the games and met with athletes at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh on May 26 to offer his support and encouragement.

Hun Sen acknowledged the positive media coverage garnered by the SEA Games in Phnom Penh, even when faced with challenges such as Cambodian runner Bou Samnang falling short of winning gold. He suggested creating compilation videos of the events and preserving the proudest moments at the Win-Win Monument. By doing so, he emphasised the importance of leaving a lasting legacy, enabling future generations to witness and share the accomplishments of their ancestors.