An exhibition of photographs illustrating past activities and achievements of the Pathet Lao, opened in Tat Luang Square, Vientiane, Laos, on Saturday (II October).
GV People look at pictures in exhibition pavilion (2 shots)
SV Minister of Information Thao Ma Khamphaihphitam cuts ribbon and enters exhibition pavilion with others
CU Four photos and paintings of Pathet Lao soldiers and women soldiers (4 shots)
CU Young woman introducing photo
CU More photos of soldiers
SV Young woman explains photos to Information Minister and party
PEOPLE LOOKING AT PHOTOGRAPHS IN EXHIBITION: MINISTER OF INFORMATION CUTTING RIBBON AND ENTERING EXHIBITION PAVILION WITH OTHERS: PHOTOGRAPHS AND PAINTINGS OF PATHET LAO SOLDIERS AND WOMEN SOLDIERS: YOUNG WOMAN DESCRIBING PHOTOGRAPH: PHOTOGRAPHS OF SOLDIERS: YOUNG WOMAN EXPLAINING PHOTOGRAPHS TO MINISTER AND PARTY.
Initials BB/1530 NPJ/PN/BB/1649
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Background: An exhibition of photographs illustrating past activities and achievements of the Pathet Lao, opened in Tat Luang Square, Vientiane, Laos, on Saturday (II October). It was one of the events planned to celebrate the country's first Independence Anniversary under complete Pathet Lao control.
The exhibition was opened by the Minister of Information, Mr. Thao Ma Khamphaihphitam, who was accompanied by other high-ranking Government officials. The photographs in the exhibition presented a historical, visual record of the Pathet Lao's achievements,. both during combat and in civic organisation among the populace.
It was the next day, Sunday (12 October), which marked the actual 30th Anniversary of the Declaration of a Provisional Constitution, and of Independence from French colonial rule. Previous Laotian regimes have celebrated the Anniversary on 19 July as the official date when the French transferred power to the Laotians. But the Pathet Lao have always favoured the October date because that was when the Provisional Constitution was proclaimed.
This year the tone of the celebrations was directed more towards emphasising the strength of the Pathet Lao. They now have full control of the country's three million people, following their gradual administrative take-over after the Communist victories in neighbouring Vietnam and Cambodia six months ago.
While anniversary celebrations were being held in Vientiane province on Sunday, Communist Party delegations from North and South Vietnam, the Soviet Union, China and Cambodia, attended a ceremony in the northern town of Viengsay, the Pathet Lao capital.