Palestinian Ambassador Saadi Salama has won the exceptional prize at the 2009-2010 international contest on Thang Long-Hanoi called “ Hanoi -Your Destination.”

Addressing the awards ceremony, held in Hanoi on October 7, the Deputy Chairwoman of the municipal People’s Committee and Head of the contest’s Steering Committee, Ngo Thi Thanh Hang said that the contest has contributed a great deal to help Hanoi become familiar to international friends.

It has also increased the number of people who love Hanoi , a city of peace, with national and international cultural heritages and a safe and friendly destination for international visitors, said Hang.

Ambassador Salama, who used to study and work in Vietnam in the 1980s, said he felt lucky to return to work in Hanoi on the occasion of the city’s millennium birthday.

The contest gave him a chance to express his love of Hanoi where he considers his second homeland.

“I hope that there will be more contests about the country’s traditional culture to make international friends understanding your beautiful capital more,” he said.

Jointly held by the Hanoi Union of Friendship Organisations and the National Steering Committee for Thang Long-Hanoi thousand year anniversary, the contest has attracted thousands of people from many countries around the world since 2000.

This year’s competition received 1,789 entries in six languages including Chinese, Vietnamese, English, French, Russian and Spanish.

At the awards ceremony, the organising board also presented one first, five second and 10 third prizes to individuals and one first and two second prizes for groups./.