Sunday, April 25, 2010

Cambodia Marks Reunion of Journalists Celebration

BY BUTH REAKSMEY KONGKEA

Over 100 journalists including 31 veteran international journalists, photographer and cameramen who worked in 1970s in Cambodia have gathered in Phnom Penh on April 20 to meet with each other and to pay respect for those journalists, photographers and cameramen who were killed or missing-in-action (MIA) between April 1970 and April 1975.

The Celebration of the Reunion of Journalists in 1970s was organized by the Ministry of Information and was celebrated under the presidency of Khieu Kanharith, Minister of Information and Spokesman of the Royal Government of Cambodia in Phnom Penh.

The Minister of Information Khieu Kanharith said that it marked the first time the Ministry of Information has celebrated the “Reunion of Journalists Celebration” in Cambodia in order to pay respect for the journalists, photographers, and cameramen who were killed during the Khmer Rouge regime between 1970 and 1975 in Cambodia.

The main purpose of the event was to pay respect for all national and international journalists who were killed during the Khmer Rouge’s terror regime between 1975-1979, he said, adding that it was also to meet between the old generation journalists and young generation journalist so that they can share their working experience and journalism as well as to promote and strengthening their relations and friendship in the future.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all journalists for their efforts and their sacrifices during the war in Cambodia, we all knew about their sacrifices, sufferings and tortures to be offered by the Khmer Rouge regime. Many of you have gone but also many of you stayed here and come back again to see how we try to survive in our country until today. Therefore tonight’s meeting is to pay respect for those who have gone and also to pay respect for their hard work and sacrifices in bringing the real information about Khmer Rouge’s killing filed from Cambodia and spreading out over the world,” he said during opening remarks delivered to the celebration of Journalists Reunion.

Chhang Song, former Minister of Information in the Khmer Republic government which felt in 1974, said that according to reports, a total of 37 international and Cambodian journalists, photographers, and cameramen were killed or missing-in-action in Cambodia between April 1970 and April 1975.

In addition, 18 Cambodian journalists were killed or disappeared after the Khmer Rouge take-over on the 17th of April 1975, he said, adding that largest number were from Japan (10 people), France (8 people) and USA (7 people). Cambodians were four (4) during the war, plus 17 after the 15th of May 1975. Other nationalities are Switzerland (2), West Germany (1), Australia (1), Netherlands (1), India (1), Lao (1), and Australia (1). ///


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