Leaders of Cambodia's newly proclaimed Khmer Republic have wasted no time in showing that they will respect the country's ancient traditions-- even though most of them are closely associated with the overthrown monarchy.
LV & GV Wat Phnom pagoda
SV Monks arriving
SV & CU Monks getting food(6 shots)
SV Monks walking PAN TO Lon Nol & Matak
CU Lon Nol
SV Officials PAN TO monks chanting
SV Lon Nol & monks
CU Monks receiving gifts
GTV & SV Traditional dancers
SV & CU Dancers & musicians
Initials AH-JB/PW/SGM/2135 AH-JB/PW/SGM/2158
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Leaders of Cambodia's newly proclaimed Khmer Republic have wasted no time in showing that they will respect the country's ancient traditions-- even though most of them are closely associated with the overthrown monarchy.
Fears that the traditional dances might be banned were quickly dispelled when the government staged a dance and folklore festival in Phnom Penh on Saturday, just one day after the republic had been proclaimed. The following day, Prime Minister Lon Nol and his Deputy Sirit Matak themselves took part in a traditional Buddhist ceremony in the capital.
Buddhist monks are traditionally given food each morning by their followers. On special occasions in the past the monarch or his representative has taken the lead in Donating the food. But on this occasion the food came directly from the people. Soldiers, both men and women, were on hand to serve the monks on behalf of the armed forces, and there were also civilians representing Government ministers. And the Prime Minister, General Lon Nol, and his deputy, Sirit Matak, were also there to pay homage to the monks.
The ceremony took place at the foot of Wat Phnom - the Hill of the Pagoda - from which Phnom Penh takes its name. Tradition has it that it was from this hill, centuries ago, that lady Penh saved the city by casting idols of Buddha into the rising floodwaters....and the waters receded. And so the city was called Phnom Penh, Hill, and a pagoda was built there to remind people of the event.