Around 300 Vietnamese living in the US gathered in Washington, D.C., on February 6 in celebration of the coming Lunar New Year (Tet).

In his speech to the gathering, Ambassador Pham Quang Vinh thanked them for humanitarian deeds and voices to safeguard national sea and island sovereignty over the past year, adding that the embassy laid down community work as its top agenda for the coming time.

He also briefed them of progresses in various fields at home, with the economy growing higher than expected for the first time, by 5.98 percent versus the targeted 5.8 percent.

Sizing up the status of the Vietnam – US trade, Vinh said it soared 70 times to more than 35 billion USD in 2014 against two decades ago.

Over 16,500 Vietnamese students are pursuing studies in the US, the highest number among Southeast Asia countries and the eighth globally.

Both countries take steadfast position on concluding the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations expeditiously, thus opening the door to more opportunities in trade and other fields, he said.

In 2015, Vietnam and the US will co-host a series of activities celebrating the 20 th anniversary of diplomatic ties, including the “Vietnam Days in the US” in Washington.

The same day, a number of Vietnamese, including students, gathered in a similar function in the Vietnamese Embassy in Ankara, capital of Turkey.

Ambassador Nguyen The Cuong extended them the best greetings and hoped that they will stay united and contribute more to the homeland.

He also vowed to protect legitimate rights and interests of every Vietnamese national in Turkey.-VNA