Minister of Foreign Affairs Bùi Thanh Sơn. — VNA/VNS Photo
HÀ NỘI — The diplomatic sector has made great contributions to national defence, construction and development over more than seven decades, Minister of Foreign Affairs Bùi Thanh Sơn wrote in an article to mark the ministry's 76th founding anniversary (August 28, 1945-2021).
He noted that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Việt Nam was founded 76 years ago together with the establishment of the Democratic Republic of Việt Nam, with the first Minister of Foreign Affairs being the late Hồ Chí Minh, who was also the President of the then Provisional Government.
Right after its foundation the country was facing enemies from both inside and outside, the sector focused on protecting the young revolutionary administration and prolonging the valuable peaceful period for the preparation of forces for a long-term resistance.
Upholding the principle of peace, national independence and socialism, the sector became a strategic front in the two resistance wars, mobilising the support from socialist countries and peace-lovers in the world for the just struggle for national freedom, according to Sơn.
In close coordination with political and military struggles, the diplomatic sector gained important successes at negotiations in Geneva in 1954 and Paris in 1973, opening up great opportunities to head to the reunification day, the minister wrote.
During the post-war period with numerous difficulties and challenges, the Vietnamese diplomatic sector optimised the support and help from socialist countries and international friends for the cause of national reconstruction, development and defence.
Diplomacy became a tool to clear the way for the country to remove blockages and embargos and set up relationships with neighbouring countries, world powers and many partners, opening up a new context for external relations to effectively serve the comprehensive reform process, Sơn affirmed.
Regarding the sector’s contributions to the country’s “đổi mới” (Renewal) and international integration, Sơn underlined that with an external policy of independence, self-reliance, peace, cooperation, development, multilateralisation and diversification, and active and proactive international integration for the interests of the nation, the sector has taken the lead in constructing peace, protecting the Fatherland and attracting resources for the country’s development, and improving Việt Nam’s position.
So far, Việt Nam has established diplomatic ties with 189 countries, including 17 strategic partners and 13 comprehensive partners. The nation also set up economic partnerships with more than 230 economies around the world and signed 15 free trade agreements (FTA), including many new generation deals.
Việt Nam successfully hosted many large-scale international events and completed many international missions such as the role of a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council in the 2008-09 and 2020-21 tenures, the host of the ASEAN Summits in 1998, 2010 and 2020, the Asia-Europe Meeting Summit in 2004, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders Meetings in 2006 and 2017, the World Economic Forum (WEF) on East Asia in 2010 and the WEF on ASEAN in 2018, and the US-DPRK Summit in 2019, he noted.
Sơn stressed that since the COVID-19 pandemic broke out and developed complicatedly in the world and in Việt Nam, the diplomatic sector, together with other ministries and sectors, enhanced “medical diplomacy” and "vaccine diplomacy” to optimise the timely and efficient support of the international community in vaccine, medical supplies and medicine, thus joining forces with the whole country in containing the pandemic and pursuing socio-economic development at the same time.
These outstanding achievements of the diplomatic sector significantly contributed to the country's great successes of historical significance over the past 35 years of renewal, proving the sound foreign policy of the Party, the minister concluded.
“The entire diplomatic sector, under the unified leadership of the Party and the centralised management of the State, pledges to accompany the country to soon repel the COVID-19 pandemic and go forward with socio-economic recovery and development, resolves to build a comprehensive and modern diplomacy, making worthy contributions to the cause of national development for an independent, peaceful, powerful and prosperous Việt Nam,” Minister Sơn wrote.— VNS