Some 10,000 Cambodian people from all walks of life on January 7 gathered at the Koh Pich Convention and Exhibition Centre to commemorate the 35th anniversary of the victory over the genocidal Khmer Rouge regime, which was declared on January 7, 1979.

President of the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) and President of the Senate Chea Sim, CPP Vice President and Prime Minister Hun Sen, and CPP Honorary President and President of the National Assembly Heng Samrin were among others at the event.

Addressing the ceremony, Heng Samrin reviewed the darkest chapter in the country’s history under the Khmer Rouge led by Pol Pot, which killed nearly three million Cambodian people.

Though 35 years have passed, the historic event will be of significance for every generation to come as well as justice and peace loving people across the world, he said.

In that desperate time, the CPP rose up against the brutal regime under the leadership of the Cambodian United Front for National Salvation (established on December 2, 1978) and with the support of justice and peace loving people worldwide, especially Vietnamese volunteer soldiers, he noted.

Heng Samrin stressed that the victory ended the bleakest period in Cambodia’s history and opened a new and brighter page. Since then, the Cambodian people have regained their rights to live and determine their own fates, freedom, honour and dignity.

The event has also offered opportunities to rally the country’s potential for national restoration and reconstruction, he added.

“The January 7 victory is our second birthday. Without it, we would not have everything we do today,” Heng Samrin emphasised.

Reviewing the major achievements Cambodia has attained in national restoration, reconciliation and development as well as regional and international integration over the past 35 years, he said the country’s annual economic growth rate exceeded seven percent on average in recent years, per capita income surpassed 1,000 USD in 2013 and poverty rate dropped to 19 percent.

The leader highlighted the CPP’s victory in the general election of the fifth National Assembly, saying the election took place in peace, freedom and equality, as regarded by the international community.

The election result reflected the majority of the Cambodian people’s belief in the sound leadership of the CPP over the past 35 years.

However, there are still political forces and hostile elements that have continuously distorted history, tricked the public, disrespected the Constitution and laws, denied the country’s achievements and caused political instability and socio-economic disorder.

In response to the Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP)’s demonstrations and streets and marches to demand for Hun Sen’s resignation and a re-run of the national election, Heng Samrin affirmed that the CPP will not allow them to continue their illegal activities to fulfil their limitless greed.

The CPP will do anything it can to protect the National Assembly, the Government that was born from the election, the Constitution and democratic outcomes, not allowing any political force or anarchical elements to sabotage the country’s developments and Cambodian people’s achievements recorded since the January 7 victory.

Heng Samrin also reiterated the CPP’s consistent stance of negotiating with the CNRP at all levels to handle disputes, for the sake of the people and the country.-VNA