At the ceremony (Source: VNA)

Moscow (VNA)
- St. Petersburg city authority on May 17 held a ceremony to celebrate the 95th anniversary of President Ho Chi Minh’s first visit to Russia (June 30, 1923-2018).

The event was attended by Secretary of Ho Chi Minh City’s Party Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan, Director of the HCM City National University Huynh Thanh Dat, Vietnamese Ambassador to Russia Ngo Duc Manh, officials of HCM City, representatives from the host authority and Vietnamese expats living, working and studying in the Russian city.

In his opening speech, Mayor of St. Petersburg. Georgy Poltavchenko underlined the significance of the event 95 years ago, saying it laid the foundation for the relationship between the two countries’ people today.
                                                                                         
President Ho Chi Minh was a true revolutionary, and a great friend of Russian people, he said, adding that St. Petersburg is proud to be the basis for the ties between the two countries.

According to the Russian official, the ceremony, along with activities held in local universities and agencies, is part of efforts to promote Russia-Vietnam relations.

In recent years, Russia and Vietnam have cooperated in education with thousands of Vietnamese students trained in St. Petersburg. The municipal authority held many seminars on Ho Chi Minh’s ideology. It is also proud of its Ho Chi Minh Institute - the only research institute on the spiritual heritage of President Ho Chi Minh outside Vietnam.

For his part, Nhan affirmed that President Ho Chi Minh arriving in Russia 95 years ago  was very significant, becoming  a historical symbol for decisive changes to Vietnam’s revolution as well as protection and construction.

He also recalled President Ho Chi Minh’s warm feelings for Russian people, the great Russian October Revolution, Vladimir Ilyich Lenin and the Vietnam-Soviet Union friendship.

From the first years of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, developing relations with the Soviet Union was a top priority and the Soviet Union became one of the first countries in the world to officially establish diplomatic relations with Vietnam, he said.

The Vietnamese people have received great support from Russian people in the struggle for national independence and unification, as well as the national construction and development process later, Nhan stressed.

According to the Vietnamese official, relations between Vietnam and the former Soviet Union and Russia today are not only following their good foundation but growing to a new height.


He reiterated Vietnam’s policy to prioritise strengthening relations with Russia, while Russia also promotes its “Look East” policy, considering Vietnam a bridge and fulcrum to implement this policy.

He said, in the framework of the joint statement on enhancing Vietnam-Russia comprehensive strategic partnership signed in 2012, the two sides have maintained regular exchanges of delegations and strategic dialogue mechanisms, thus creating strong impetus to promote bilateral cooperation between the two countries.

After the celebration, the Vietnamese officials attended the opening ceremony of the Saint-Petersburg International Book Fair.

During his stay in Russia from May 16-21, Nhan has attended programmes to enhance friendship between HCM City and St. Petersburg.-VNA