Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung affirmed the country’s consistent policy to respect people’s right to religious and belief freedom and ensure all religions observe the law.

The PM made the remarks at a reception in Hanoi on February 1 for Nguyen Van Nhon, President of the Vietnam Episcopal Council (VEC), and other members of the Council.

At the meeting, Dung conveyed his best wishes and greetings to Christian dignitaries and followers on the occasion of the approaching Lunar New Year festival.

The leader highlighted the country’s 2012 socio-economic achievements, affirming that the results are partly attributable to practical contributions from the Catholic community.

He also noted that the year 2012 saw hectic religious activities, including those of the Catholics, which were combined with the care for followers’ better life for the nation’s wealth.

Dung wished Catholic dignitaries and followers to continue joining hands in making the country prosperous.

Nhon expressed his delight with Vietnam’s 2012 results, which was a year full of difficulties and challenges.

He thanked the Party and State for the attention they paid to the VEC and the Catholic community, and affirmed that he and other dignitaries will continue encouraging followers to serve national socio-economic construction and development.-VNA