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100th anniversary of late King Father’s birth planned

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The statue of the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk near Independence Monument in Phnom Penh. Hong Menea

100th anniversary of late King Father’s birth planned

The Mudhita Foundation and the Union of Youth Federations of Cambodia (UYFC) have joined the government and other national institutions in marking the 100th anniversary of the birth of the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk and the 10th anniversary of his passing.

The anniversaries fall on October 31 and November 1 and the celebrations are set to take place at the Chanchhaya Pavilion of The Royal Palace, though they are not open to the general public due to space constraints.

The ceremony will be presided over by King Norodom Sihamoni and Queen Mother Norodom Monineath Sihanouk.

According to the foundation and UYFC, the royal ceremony will feature three main activities: An alms round ceremony for monks, displays of the works of the late King Father and the grand ceremony. On October 31, at 7:30am, at the garden centre east of Independence Monument in front of the statue of the late King Father, 100 monks will collect morning alms.

“We celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of the late King Father to … express our profound gratitude to him for his crusade for independence and for rebuilding and uniting the nation,” they said in a joint press release.

Princess Norodom Arunrasmy said on the National Television of Cambodia (TVK) on October 25 that it would be a milestone ceremony celebrating the 100th anniversary of his birth.

“I have been thinking about this royal ceremony since October, 2021. The year 2022 is the 100th anniversary of the birth of the late King Father. We want to honour and remember his work in the artistic field which he always promoted in addition to his leadership of the nation when he was alive,” she said.

UYFC president Hun Many also said that the union was honoured to be given a great opportunity to join in the celebrations.

“We will work hard and be responsible for organising this royal ceremony properly, successfully and smoothly and to ensure that the meaning of the ceremony becomes widely known,” he said.

He said members of the public are not allowed to attend the ceremony because the space is not large enough, noting that the King and Queen Mother and other senior government leaders will also attend it.

“We ask for sympathy. And though not being able to attend this ceremony in person, I ask them to follow the event through media outlets, and please honour and celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of the late King Father,” he said.

The Chinese embassy in Cambodia on September 28 also celebrated the 100th anniversary of the birth of the late King Father for his work enhancing friendly relations between China and Cambodia.

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