LieuternantGeneral Lê Đức Anh and his comrades at a meeting during the Hồ Chí Minh Campaign in the southeastern province of Bình Phước in 1975. VNA/ VNS Photo
HÀ NỘI – Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc hosted a reception in Hà Nội yesterday for high-ranking delegations from Cambodia and Laos who are in Việt Nam to attend the State funeral for former President General Lê Đức Anh.
Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen expressed his deep sorrow and condolences over the passing of the former president.
The Cambodian PM described General Anh as a close friend and comrade who contributed to the liberation of Cambodia from a genocidal regime in 1979.
He thanked the Party, State and Government of Việt Nam as well as General Anh for providing support for Cambodia.
Head of the Lao delegation, Politburo member of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party and President of the Lao Front for National Construction (LFNC) Saysomphone Phomvihane, conveyed the deep sorrow from the Lao Party, State, National Assembly and LFNC for their Vietnamese counterparts over the death of the former president.
He praised the valuable contributions made by General Anh to the revolutionary cause of Việt Nam and the Việt Nam-Laos traditional friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive co-operation.
On behalf of the Party, State, Government and people of Việt Nam, PM Phúc thanked the leaders of Cambodia and Laos for their sympathy and for sending delegations to Việt Nam to attend the funeral of General Anh.
The PM took the occasion to reiterate the importance that Việt Nam attached to the friendly neighbourliness and comprehensive co-operation with Cambodia, and the traditional friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive co-operation with Laos.
Earlier the same day, PM Phúc met Cuban Minister of Communications Jorge Luis Perdomo Di-Lella who was assigned by the Cuban government to attend the funeral of former President Lê Đức Anh and conveyed the regards of the Communist Party of Cuba’s leaders to their Vietnamese Party and State counterparts.
PM Phúc said Việt Nam was ready to help Cuba build a cyber security supervision centre. He expressed his delight at bilateral all-around co-operation, including in information and communications technology, between the Vietnamese Ministry of Information and Communications and the Cuban Ministry of Communications.
He believed that with its potential and determination, Cuba could develop a modern telecommunications infrastructure, and Việt Nam was willing to help the country achieve that goal.
The Cuban Minister informed the host about the outcomes of ties between the two ministries, saying that both sides discussed issues regarding enhancing bilateral ICT relations, especially cyber security.
Condolences continued to flow in from abroad over the death of former President General Lê Đức Anh.
President of Nicaragua Daniel Ortega Saavedra and Vice President of Nicaragua Rosario Murillo sent a letter of sympathy to General Secretary of the Communist Party of Việt Nam and President of Vietnam Nguyễn Phú Trọng.
President of Mongolia Khaltmaa Battulga also offered his condolences to Party General Secretary and President Nguyễn Phú Trọng.
Prime Minister of Cambodia Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen extended his sympathies to Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc.
Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand Don Pramudwinai cabled a message of sympathy to Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Phạm Bình Minh.
Chairman of the Japan-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Alliance and secretary-general of the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan Toshihiro Nikai extended condolences to Vietnamese Ambassador to Japan Vũ Hồng Nam.
General Lê Đức Anh, who served as President of Việt Nam from September 1992 to December 1997, passed away on April 22 at the age of 99.
Việt Nam declared national mourning for the former President on May 3 and 4.
A State funeral will be held for General Lê Đức Anh today, with the respect-paying ceremony held from 7am-11am at the National Funeral Hall, No. 5 Trần Thánh Tông Street, Hà Nội.
At the same time, respect-paying and memorial ceremonies for the former president will also be held at Thong Nhat Hall in HCM City, and the Hall of the People’s Committee of Thừa Thiên Huế Province.
Life of service: Lê Đức Anh
Former President Lê Đức Anh met with local residents of Phú Đình Commune, Định Hoá District in Bắc Thái Province in 1995.VNA/VNS Photo Cao Phong
Cambodia Prime Minister Hun Sen
Former President Lê Đức Anh said that Việt Nam respected Cambodia's decision. He told me that Việt Nam's mission was only preventing the comeback of the Pol Pot regime and that Việt Nam could not stay in Cambodia forever. He said that at some point, Cambodia would have to be able to protect itself.
To me this is important, because some countries said they would respect us and our decision, but when we didn't follow their requirements they would threaten to cut aid and assistance, but it was not the case for Việt Nam.
Professor Ka Mathul from the International Relations Institute of Cambodia
The passing of former President Le Duc Anh, who made great contributions to helping Cambodia get rid of the genocidal Pol Pot regime, has left deep grief in the hearts of many officers, generals and researchers of the country.
With the assistance of Việt Nam, especially that of General Anh, Cambodia established a combat unit in Việt Nam named Division 125 in Long Giao Commune, Cam My District, the southern province of Đồng Nai.
With the support of Vietnamese volunteers and the clear-minded military command of General Anh, Cambodia overthrew the Pol Pot regime.
Vietnamese volunteers' presence in Phnom Penh at the time of liberation (January 7, 1979) was of great importance and helped protect and strengthen Cambodia's new government, protect property and life for Cambodian people and restore and develop the country.
Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen and General Anh built a long-term relationship starting in 1977.
General Le Duc Anh was a talented general and Prime Minister Hun Sen will always remember his merits and those of Vietnamese volunteers.
Phạm Quang Vinh, Former Vietnamese Ambassador to the US
The former President’s visit to the US in 1995 was of significance to Việt Nam–US relations. This visit left an impression of a national leader who had a broad vision on the country’s interests and position, and who was decisive – not much into talking but really down-to-earth.
The former President had a meeting with Bobby Muller, who was the chairman of the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation, in which he talked about his views on post-war healing and relations normalisation. He also came to see how Americans live and work, which was a surprise to the US security officers.
In this historical visit, the matter of joint humanitarian efforts to overcome the legacies of war opened the path for the normalisation of relations between Việt Nam and the US. He told Senator John Kerry and Senator John McCain that Việt Nam was ready to show the US its transparency in seeking missing American soldiers, allowing the US to come and visit different sites in the country so that they could trust the willingness of Việt Nam to overcome differences and reach a normalisation agreement.
The former president (1st L) during his visit to the US. VNA File photo
Vũ Mão, Former Chairman of the National Assembly's Office
Lê Đức Anh was the commander of the fourth Corps sent to Cambodia to support the neighbour in the fight against the Pol Pot regime. He was a thoughtful leader. He was also busy during the day so he could only work with us at night. He was this simple and modest person, but always worked hard and with enthusiasm.
What I can feel about him was that he was down-to-earth and close to his people. He was also the one who initiated the Vietnamese Heroic Mother title. He understood deeply the hardship and enormous sacrifices that mothers had to make during wartime for their country by sending their children to the war. He also met with the first Vietnamese mothers who were granted the title at the Presidential Palace.—VNS