National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân (L) meets President of Cuban National Assembly of People’s Power Esteban Lazo in Havana on Tuesday. — VNA/VNS Photo Trọng Đức
HAVANA — National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân reiterated the support of Vietnamese leaders and people for Cuba’s revolutionary cause during her meeting with President of Cuban National Assembly of People’s Power Esteban Lazo in Havana on Tuesday.
The top Vietnamese legislator is leading a delegation of the Vietnamese Party and State to attend the funeral of Cuban leader Fidel Castro set for December 4.
Ngân asked Lazo to convey the deepest sympathies of leaders and former leaders of the Vietnamese Party and State, and people to President Raul Castro, Party and State leaders and people of Cuba, as well as Fidel’s family.
Generations of Vietnamese remember the solidarity and valuable support of Fidel Castro for Viet Nam over the past half a century, she said.
The chief legislator said she believed that under the leadership of Raul Castro, the Cuban Party, State and people would realise Fidel Castro’s aims in national construction and defence.
The Vietnamese Party and State will hold a ceremony in tribute to the Cuban revolutionary leader, who was also a close comrade of Vietnamese leaders and people.
For his part, Lazo said the Vietnamese delegation was the first foreign delegation to arrive in Cuba and pay tribute to Fidel Castro on Monday, which demonstrates the solidarity between the two countries’ leaders and people.
He noted that Vietnamese President Trần Đại Quang was the final foreign head of State to visit Fidel Castro on November 15, just 10 days before he passed away.
Lazo expressed his admiration for the achievements Việt Nam has recorded over the past three decades, saying Cuba treasures Việt Nam’s experience in national construction and defence, and is resolved to promote the traditional fraternity between the two Parties, States and peoples.
Host and guest said that the visit to Cuba by President Trần Đại Quang from November 15-17 was a success, consolidating the bilateral relationship, especially in politics, national defence, security and external affairs, while creating new momentum for bilateral economic, trade and investment ties.
They also agreed on measures to improve legislative co-operation between the two countries.
A ceremony was held on Tuesday night (Havana time) at the Revolution Square in Havana in memory of Fidel Castro, with the participation of Cuban Party and State leaders, about 60 delegations of foreign leaders and representatives from international and regional organisations, and more than one million Cubans.
Being one of several foreign leaders invited to speak at the event, NA Chairwoman Ngân said the Cuban Party, State and people have lost a legendary leader. International revolutionary and communist movements have lost a courageous, unyielding and experienced leader. The Vietnamese Party, State and people have lost a faithful comrade.
Generations of Vietnamese will always bear in their heart Fidel Castro’s saying that “For Việt Nam, Cuba is willing to shed its blood”, she said, reiterating the solidarity of Vietnamese leaders and people with Cuba.
She noted her belief that Fidel will live forever in Cuba’s revolutionary cause as well as in the heart of fraternal nations worldwide.
Fidel will be interred in a cemetery in Santiago city on December 4.
All-round ties with Russia
Việt Nam is determined to continue strengthening co-operation with Russia, especially in politics, economy-trade, investment, security-defence, education-training, science-technology and culture-tourism, National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân affirmed.
The Vietnamese legislator made the statement during a meeting with Speaker of Russia’s State Duma Vyateslav Volodin on November 30 in Havana.
The two sides highlighted the effective co-operation between the two legislative bodies, saying that the two sides have maintained dialogue mechanisms and co-ordination at international parliament forums like the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly, and the Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership Meeting.
Ngân suggested the Russian side accelerate the signing of an agreement on food safety control, making it easier for Việt Nam to expand exports of farm and aquatic products to the Russian market.
She also called for more support from Russia’s State Duma for the Vietnamese community in the country.
For his part, Volodin assured that his country considers Việt Nam its leading partner in Southeast Asia and hopes to step up ties between the two nations.
The legislators agreed to back measures bolstering bilateral relations, and the implementation of the Việt Nam –Eurasian Economic Union Free Trade Agreement, which took effect in October, 2016 towards lifting two-way trade to US$10 billion by 2020.
They also underlined the need to perfect the regulatory framework for bilateral co-operation, and enhance connectivity among the two countries’ localities.
Volodin took the occasion to invite NA Chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân to attend the IPU General Assembly in October 2017 in his country.
On the same day, Ngân and the Vietnamese delegation laid a wreath in the Hồ Chí Minh monument in Havana.— VNS