Viet Nam News
HAVANA — The Communist Party and State of Cuba held a meeting on Wednesday to mark 45 years since Fidel Castro’s first visit to Việt Nam, with the participation of around 400 delegates, activists and diplomats.
Prominent at the event were Politburo member and President of the Cuban National Assembly of People’s Power Esteban Lazo Hernández, Politburo member and Secretary of the Party Central Committee Mercedes López Ácea, Politburo member and General Secretary of the Cuban Workers’ Federation Ulises Guilarte de Nacimiento, Secretary of the Party Central Committee and head of the Party Central Committee’s Department of External Relations José Ramón Balaguer.
Addressing the ceremony, Việt Nam’s Ambassador to Cuba Nguyễn Trung Thành affirmed that the Việt Nam-Cuba relationship was special and unique, and every generation of Vietnamese loved and respected the heroic Cuban country and Fidel - its legendary leader.
Looking back at Fidel’s first trip to Việt Nam, the ambassador stressed that despite the danger, he was determined to visit the battlefield and people in southern Việt Nam. He became the only foreign head of State to have crossed the 17th parallel to visit a liberated region in southern Việt Nam during the anti-US resistance war.
Holding photos of the historic trip of Fidel to Quảng Trị Province, Ambassador Thanh said the leader’s remarks and actions had been a source of valuable encouragement for the Vietnamese soldiers and people during their struggle for national independence and freedom.
The celebration of Fidel’s Việt Nam visit in September 1973 also honoured the solidarity, exemplary friendship and comprehensive co-operation between the two nations, the ambassador said.
Politburo member and Secretary of the Party Central Committee Mercedes López Acea recalled the similarities between the two nations in their ideology and aspiration for independence and freedom, despite the great geographical distance, which made them become loyal fighting comrades on both the battlefield and the ideological front.
He said he believed the Vietnamese and Cuban people would continue their path to prosperous and sustainable socialism, guided by the ideology of their heroes and fallen soldiers, and maintain close bonds despite the increasingly complicated developments in the international arena and the dangers threatening humankind as a whole.
Participants at the meeting were treated to a play staged by the Colmenita children’s troupe based on José Martí’s classic work A Journey Through The Land Of The Annamese, and art performances by Cuban and Vietnamese artists and students.
The series of activities marking 45 years since Fidel’s first visit to Việt Nam will end next Monday. — VNS