An inaugural sport and tourism walk in Anlong Veng District and the Dangrek mountains took place over the weekend jointly organised by the Ministry of Tourism and the National Olympic Committee of Cambodia (NOCC).
On Saturday morning, nearly 1,400 participating amateur athletes took part in what the NOCC and relevant authorities dubbed a ‘Historic Walk’.
“First, we did not expect is that there would be so many participants, said NOCC secretary general Vath Chamroeun. Much more than we expected because we only estimated 1,000 people. But actually, nearly 1,400 people took part,” he added.
Mr. Chamroeun said he was also surprised and pleased to witness the governor of Sisaket, and a small contingent of Thais also take part.
“As the organising committee of course we are very happy about the event. Thanks to strong support from the people of Anlong Veng, we can organise a series of sporting events and tours in the region, said Mr. Chamroeun. “[It is] the last [stronghold] of the Khmer Rouge, as well as historic sites such as Ta Mok’s house. We hope that in future events we will attract more foreigners.”
This history-based athletic event was organised in collaboration with the Oddar Meanchey Administration, Anlong Veng administration, and the Anlong Veng Peace Center.
The event coincides with today’s Victory over Genocide Day and the recent inauguration of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s Win-Win monument, a dedication to the 20th anniversary of peace in the kingdom.
“We want to educate Cambodians about the dark period of the Pol Pot regime,” added Mr. Chamroeun. “And remind them to defend peace and avoid evil. We also want the border area to become a bustling area and [for it] to begin to benefit from development as other regions have. A boost to the economy can come from tourism events such as these.”