SUVA, Oct. 10 (Xinhua) -- The south Pacific island nation of Fiji on Thursday marked the 49th anniversary of its independence from British colonial rule with the participation of thousands of people from all walks of life.
With the theme of "A Progressive and Sustainable Fiji for All," the Fiji Day celebrations were held around the island nation with main celebrations at the capital city Suva's Albert Park.
With a 21-gun salute, Fijian President Jioji Konrote reviewed a parade by about 400 personnel from the Fiji military forces, Fiji police force and the Fiji corrections services.
Celebrations were also held in three other cities of Lautoka, Labasa and Levuka.
In his national address, President Konrote highlighted that unity has been the single greatest driver for the nation's progress. He also reflected on Fiji's achievements as a nation and said that Fiji has reached new and greater heights.
"It is clear that the Fiji of today is more modern, efficient, and competitive in the global marketplace, for the benefit of both our people and our growing economy," he said.
For his part, Fiji's Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama said that the 49 years of history has taught them that there is no obstacle a united Fiji cannot overcome and there is no victory - however improbable - Fiji cannot attain.
In 1970, Fiji gained its independence from Britain after being under British colonial rule since 1874.
As a nation with more than 300 islands, Fiji currently has a population of around 900,000.