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New museum details sacrifices made by 16 patriotic leaders

The Ministry of National Defence opened a museum in Phonkheng village, Vientiane on Monday explaining the detention of 16 Lao patriotic front leaders by the Vientiane puppet government that betrayed the country.
Attending the opening ceremony were Vice President of Laos, Mr Phankham Viphavanh, Minister of National Defence, General Chansamone Chanyalath, along with ministers, officials, members of the military and police, and guests.

During the ceremony, General Chansone Chanyalath commented on the historic jailbreak at Phonkheng when leaders escaped to the safety of the revolutionary stronghold in Huaphan province’s Viengxay.
“This is unprecedented in the history of Laos and rare in the world, and showed the leaders’ brave fighting spirit, not giving up, and risking their lives in the struggle for national liberation,” the General said.
Under the leadership of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party, this historic event has become a valuable lesson for research, used in defence missions and building a prosperous and strong country, he said.
“People are now richer and happier, and society is harmonious. There is democracy, justice and civilisation in line with socialist principles,” he added.
Authorities believe valuable lessons can be learned from the struggle for national liberation against the foreign aggressors. Politburo members approved construction of the museum in the ministry’s Phonkheng area to honour the 16 Lao patriotic front leaders’ intelligence and courage in fighting against the invaders.
The 16 Lao patriotic front leaders consist of:
1 Prince Souphanouvong
2 Mr Nouhak Phoumsavanh.
3 Mr Phoumy Vongvichit,
4 Mr Phoun Sipaseut.
5 Mr Sithon Kommadam
6 Mr Singgapore Sikhot-chounlamany
7 Mr Meun Somvichit
8 Mr Sisana Sisane
9 Mr Ma Khaykhamphit-houne
10 Mr Khamphai Boupha
11 Mr Bouasy Chaleunsouk
12 Mr Mahasomboun Vongnobountham
13 Mr Phao Phimmachanh
14 Mr Khamphet Phoum-mavanh
15 Mr Phoukhao
16 Mr Manavong Esane
The facility will educate officials, party members, students and the multi-ethnic Lao people on the history of the Party’s leaders in political, military, and foreign affairs. Specifically, it commemorates the leaders’ incredible jailbreak and gives visitors an understanding of the history and struggles of the Lao people from 1945-1975.
For many years, Laos battled oppressive foreign powers who sought to subjugate the country, but in collaboration with its Indochinese neighbours, Laos repelled all enemies and achieved liberation in 1975.
After years of battle against the French, Laos declared its independence to the world on October 12, 1945.
But only a few months later, the aggressor returned to Laos, and the struggle for freedom began for a second time.
Following the decisive defeat of the French and the Geneva Accord of 1954, the Americans began a campaign of aerial bombardment and Laos once more found itself under attack.
With the growth of the revolutionary forces, on March 22, 1955, the Lao People’s Party, (today called the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party), established their stronghold in the caves and mountains of Huaphan province.


By Khonesavanh Latsaphao
(Latest Update July 14, 2020)

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