International delegates hail Vietnam’s hosting of Vesak Day 2019

Foreign Buddhist dignitaries and followers are attending the celebration of the UN Vesak Day 2019 in Tam Chuc pagoda in Ha Nam province, just 60 km south of Hanoi.

Vietnam � the host country � has thoroughly prepared for this event, according to delegate Maarek Lind from Estonia.

This place is very beautiful. I really like this place. Vietnamese people are very kind and lovely. The festival is made very nicely. The people are accepting us from different countries, Lind said.

The organizing board has set up a food center to serve 4,000 people, a vegetarian buffet. Amoghamati Susanne Traud-Dubois, from Germany, said that Vietnam has given a warm reception, and the vegetarian dishes are delicious.

When I was here last time in 2014 I gave a talk on the impact of eating meat on climate change and also that Buddhism teaches us not to kill living beings and not to eat animals so I think that it's the right thing that this has changed. So I'm really happy that this time, there is no meat served to the delegations. That's fantastic, she noted.

With more than 1,600 international delegates from 112 countries and territories, this year's event has the largest number of foreign guests and the most heads of state in 15 reiterations of the event. Delegates were picked up at the airport, taken to arrange accommodations and given free tours of Vietnam's iconic spiritual and natural landscapes Trang An-Bai Dinh, Yen Tu, Fansipan, and Sapa to give them a taste of Vietnam's tourism potential.

All of you have done a great job to organize this kind of big event. So I think everyone who are participating in the conference is quite pleased and happy from the airport to here. I think this is a new experience for us because this is quite far from the city. The mountains and surroundings are really nice. The place is quite brilliant and beautiful, said Venerable Rev Moragaswewe Vijitha Thero, a delegate from Sri Lanka.

A large number of delegates from India have been attracted to this year's celebration, which is an opportunity to promote Vietnam to Indian travelers.

Vietnam is not as famous in India as are Japan, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Thailand. This year's UN Vesak Day celebration will help Indian people know more about Vietnam and prize it as a future destination for theirspiritual travels, said Sulekha Kumbhare, a member of India's National Commission for Minorities.

Delegate Prayan told VOV about his impression: Vietnam has a wide variety of food. Vegetarian food is different in India, where we commonly use a lot of spice in our food. We enjoyed and are thankful for the kind arrangements made for us. It's our first time coming to this country.

UN Day of Vesak 2019 is taking place at Tam Chuc pagoda in the northern province of Ha Nam from Sunday to Tuesday, bringing together more than 1,600 foreign delegates from 112 countries and territories and over 20,000 Vietnamese Buddhist dignitaries and followers. This is the third time Vietnam has hosted the UN event.

Source: VOV5