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Massive parade marks 70 years of independence

Update: September, 02/2015 - 12:02

At least 30,000 troops and civilian units marched through Ba Dinh Square, the same historic place that witnessed the establishment of a free and independent Viet Nam following the victory of the August Revolution (August 19, 1945) against fascism in World War II. — VNA/VNS Photo

HA NOI (VNS) — The largest-ever parade in the country was held this morning in Ha Noi to commemorate 70 years since the day late President Ho Chi Minh made the Independence Declaration.

At least 30,000 troops and civilian units marched through Ba Dinh Square, the same historic place that witnessed the establishment of a free and independent Viet Nam following the victory of the August Revolution (August 19, 1945) against fascism in World War II.

Some foreign dignitaries were present on the occasion, including Laotian Vice-President Bounnhang Vorachith and Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Men Sam An.

The parade began at 7am with the lighting of a torch that was carried to the square from the nearby Ho Chi Minh Museum.

A 21-round salute was then fired from cannons stationed at the Thang Long Imperial Citadel during the flag ceremony.

A 21-round salute was fired to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the country's Independence Day.— VNA/VNS Photo

In his opening speech, President Truong Tan Sang said though Viet Nam was born of the victory of the August Revolution, it took more than 30 years of war for the country to be reunified and the people to live in "real peace".

President Truong Tan Sang delivers a speech at the parade.

Immediately after the September 2 Independence Declaration, the young government and its people had to suffer nine long years of struggle against the French, who tried to re-establish their colonial rule in Viet Nam after the end of World War II.

The Anti-French Resistance War, or the First Indochina War, ended with the decisive defeat of the French army in the Battle of Dien Bien Phu on May 7, 1954.

Yet peace had not been achieved. Viet Nam had to go through another 21 years of war against the Americans, generally known as the Second Indochina War.

The war ended with the historic victory of the Ho Chi Minh Campaign on the Vietnamese side on April 30, 1975 that completely reunified Sai Gon (now HCM City) and the southern part that had been separated from the northern part at the 17 parallel under the Geneva Accord in 1954, eventually leading to the country's independence as a whole.

"Right after that were the defending wars along the southwestern and northern borders. It was not till then that our Vietnamese people enjoyed real peace," Sang said.

People greets the marching soldiers on the Trang Tien Street of the capital. — VNA/VNS Photo

The President paid tribute to late President Ho Chi Minh for leading the Vietnamese people to victory and to "millions of heroes – the outstanding sons of the country – who sacrificed their lives for the freedom and independence of our motherland."

People wave national and Party's flags at the parade. — VNS Photo Truong Vi

"Viet Nam is also deeply grateful for the help of our brother countries and the support of countries around the world during the struggle for our independence, the fight to protect our nation and in our nation-building effort," Sang said.

Sovereignty in focus

Viet Nam was getting not only huge opportunities to develop, but also challenges as international and regional situations keep shifting in an unexpected manner, especially in the sovereignty issue, Sang said.

The Viet Nam People's Army force at the parade. — VNS Photo Truong Vi

"The sea and islands dispute in the East Sea is growing increasingly intense," Sang said.

The Viet Nam People's Navy force at the parade. — VNA/VNS Photo
Sang called on the country to strengthen the armed and security forces and improve their combat capabilities to protect the sovereignty of the nation and the peaceful lives of the people.

The Viet Nam People's Army force at the parade. — VNS Photo Truong Vi

He said Viet Nam would continue to strive for multilateral and diversified relations and would always be a trusted partner in the global community, in order to gain international support for maintaining balance and stability in the region.

Overseas Vietnamese

HCM City's Overseas Vietnamese Committee on Monday organised a meeting with 100 representatives of the Viet kieu community to mark the 70th Independence Day, September 2.

"Overseas Vietnamese have significantly contributed to the cause of national construction and defence, and been an important element in consolidating co-operation and friendship between Viet Nam and other countries," Le Thanh Liem, deputy chairman of the city People's Committee delivered, told the meeting.

Since 2004 overseas Vietnamese have sent remittances of US$40 billion, accounting for 40 – 60 per cent of the country's total. The figure was $5 billion last year.

Several millions of dollars have also been raised for charity by overseas Vietnamese.

Hundreds of experts have returned home, bringing science and technology to serve the country.

At the meeting, the committee awarded the Labour Medal, third class, to Prof Dr Dang Luong Mo, a Japanese-Vietnamese who is an advisor to the National University HCM City, for his contributions to setting up the semi-conductor industry in Viet Nam.

The committee also awarded the Primer Minister's merit certificate to Prof Dr Vo Van Toi, head of the microbiology faculty at the National University – HCM City International University.

Ho Chi Minh Medal

On Tuesday, the Ho Chi Minh Medal was conferred on the HCM City government and people for their achievements in the cause of building, developing and protecting the city.Deputy President Nguyen Thi Doan gave away the medal to mark the 70th Independence Day, September 2.

Following 30 years of renovation, HCM City has undergone a change in all economic and social aspects and managed some important accomplishments.

The city contributes 21 per cent of the country's GDP, 20 per cent of exports and 33 per cent of Government revenues and has attracted the most FDI.

Last year the city's average income was $5,131 compared to $1,011 in 2000 and $360 in 1976. — VNS

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