Flag salute ceremony celebrates ASEAN’s 54th founding anniversary in Hanoi hinh anh 1Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son addresses the ceremony (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – The Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs on August 8 held a virtual ASEAN flag salute ceremony to celebrate the bloc’s 54th founding anniversary (August 8, 1967) and 26 years of Vietnam’s membership of the association.

The ceremony was chaired by Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son, with the attendance of Deputy FM and Head of Vietnam's SOM ASEAN Nguyen Quoc Dung, Honorary President of the ASEAN Women’s Circle of Hanoi (AWCH) Vu Thi Bich Ngoc, and the participation via videconference of ambassadors and representatives from nine embassies of ASEAN member countries in Hanoi.

The annual event aims to honour the association’s common values and commitments to promote solidarity, friendship and cooperation under the common house of ASEAN Community.

Addressing the ceremony, Son highlighted that the great achievements of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) are the fruits of restless efforts in the cooperation process of people from ASEAN member countries.

Despite ups and downs in the history and various challenges, ASEAN has been a valuable asset and great interest of all member countries, requiring efforts of all members to maintain and reinforce.

Underlining adverse impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially the current fourth wave of infections, the minister lauded ASEAN’s stronger responding capacity and creativity in dealing with the pandemic, evidently through the prompt and timely implementation of initiatives such as the COVID-19 ASEAN Response Fund, which has received more than 20 million USD, and the ASEAN Regional Reserve of Medical Supplies for Public Health Emergencies, thus becoming ready to support needy areas, along with economic measures to avoid the disruption of supply chains and form a safe travel corridor.

Son also stressed that amid great difficulties and challenges, the spirit of ASEAN Community and the awareness of the community must be associated in harmony into common responding efforts in national and regional levels. People in the region must feel their role as the soul and the cell of the ASEAN Community, he stated.

On the occasion, the minister announced the implementation of a decision of ASEAN leaders to encourage the regular hanging of the ASEAN flag at government offices from August 8.
Vietnam will fly the ASEAN flag alongside the national flag, initially at the Foreign Ministry's headquarters, and then government offices.

He expressed belief that flying the ASEAN flag will contribute to deepening the friendship and solidarity among ASEAN, reinforcing the social and cultural relationship among ASEAN people, enhancing the awareness about the association and inspiring people on the collective spirit and motivating their felling of belonging to the ASEAN Community./.