Representatives of foreign diplomatic agencies in Vietnam have arrived at the Reunification Palace in Ho Chi Minh City to attend the funeral of late Prime Minister Phan Van Khai.
The delegations of officials from the Consulates General of Russia and the United States in the southern Vietnamese metropolis joined the formal ceremony on Wednesday morning, the second day of the two-day state funeral of former PM Khai.
Alexey V. Popov, consul general of Russia in Ho Chi Minh City, stated he was lucky to be able to meet PM Khai as well as participating in meetings between the former Vietnamese premier and Russian leaders.
“In Russia, Phan Van Khai is popularly known as an excellent leader who contributed greatly to the development of Vietnam. He always exerted his best efforts to cement the Vietnam-Russia relationship, helping elevate the two nations’ ties to a strategic partnership,” Popov remarked in Vietnamese in the guestbook.
“He knows me. What an honor! PM Khai has always adored Russia and Russian people,” the diplomat continued.
|Alexey V. Popov, consul general of Russia in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Tuoi Tre|
Writing in the guestbook next to Popov was U.S. Consul General Mary Tarnowka.
PM Khai played a significant role in the development and international integration of Vietnam, as well as the country’s cooperation with the U.S., Tarnowka wrote.
On behalf of the U.S. government and delegation of U.S. diplomats in Vietnam, Tarnowka extended her deepest condolences to his family as well as Vietnamese people.
U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Daniel J. Kritenbrink also expressed his sincere condolences on the passing of former PM Khai, the first Vietnamese premier to visit the U.S., on Tuesday morning.
“Prime Minister Khai’s contributions to the U.S.-Vietnam partnership continue to have a lasting effect on our rapidly growing cooperation in trade, regional security, and people-to-people ties,” the diplomat continued.
“A humble but persistent reformer, his work will influence Vietnam for generations to come,” he added.
|Mary Tarnowka, consul general of the U.S. in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Tuoi Tre|
Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Vietnam traveled from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City to attend the funeral on Tuesday evening.
The Vietnamese economy has achieved positive development and become more integrated into the global arena, partly thanks to the dedication of PM Khai, said Ambassador Lever.
People will remember him for helping Vietnam attain significant milestones, namely the establishment of business laws, the country’s entry into the World Trade Organization in 2006, and a bilateral trade agreement with the U.S. in 2000, Lever remarked.
PM Khai passed away at his home in Cu Chi District, Ho Chi Minh City on March 17, aged 85.
He was the prime minister of Vietnam for a period of nine years from 1997 to 2006.
The celebration of life will be carried out in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City at 7:30 am on Thursday, before the burial rituals take place in his hometown at 11:00 am on the same day.
|The note written in Vietnamese of Consul General Alexey V. Popov in the guestbook. Photo: Tuoi Tre|