|resident Truong Tan Sang awards the Gold Star Order, the nation's highest order, to the Viet Nam People's Army for its great contributions to the national cause. — VNA/VNS Photo Tri Dung
HA NOI (VNS) — President Truong Tan Sang on Saturday awarded the nation's highest honour, the Gold Star Order, to the Viet Nam People's Army (VPA) for the fifth time, in recognition of its recognition of its great contributions to the revolutionary cause of the Party and State.
The award was conferred at a solemn ceremony held in Ha Noi to celebrate the VPA's 70th founding anniversary and the 25th All People's Defence Day (December 22).
The event was attended by Party General Secretary and Chairman of the Party Central Committee's Military Commission, Nguyen Phu Trong, President Sang, National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung, former Party and State leaders and leaders of the Defence Ministry.
Addressing the event, which was broadcast live on Vietnam Television, Sang greeted Heroic Vietnamese mothers, heroes of the people's armed forces, war veterans, and all officers and soldiers of the VPA.
Over the past seven decades, under "the absolute, direct and comprehensive leadership of the Party" and with the people's support, the VPA has overcome all hardships and difficulties to achieve great victories in the cause of liberating and defending the country and fulfilling international missions, he said.
Amidst "complicated and unpredictable developments" in the region and the world, the Party and State remains steadfast in upholding the goals of national independence and socialism, he said.
Sang said the VPA should improve its combative strength on the foundations of being a revolutionary, regular, elite, and gradually modernising army.
Felicitations from Laos
The Lao Party Central Committee sent a congratulatory message on the occasion, saying behind every victory achieved by the Vietnamese Revolution was the dedication of and huge sacrifices made by the Viet Nam People's Army.
It noted in particular the historic 1954 Dien Bien Phu victory that ended French colonialism in Indochina as well as the 1975 Ho Chi Minh campaign that liberated the south and unified the nation.
These successes opened up a new chapter in the struggle for national independence and justice all over the world, it said.
The Party, State, army and people of Laos were grateful for the constant support provided by their Vietnamese counterparts in their past struggles for national independence and the current process of national construction and defence, the message said.
This had brought the cause of national liberation to "a complete triumph" and taken the nation as a whole to the next level of development, it added.
The message expressed the wish for everlasting friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive co-operation between Laos and Viet Nam.
A similar message of congratulations was also sent by Chairman of the Cambodia People's Party Chea Sim to Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong.
He wrote that the Cambodia People's Party, the Government, army and people of Cambodia were grateful to the Viet Nam People's Army for its help in liberating them from the genocidal Pol Pot regime. Cambodia would forever remember this noble deed, he said.
Chea Sim also said that he expected the traditional friendship and all-round cooperation between the two countries would grow unceasingly. — VNS