State funeral held for former President Le Duc Anh

A state funeral for former President Le Duc Anh began on Friday with a respect-paying ceremony at 7 a.m and a memorial service later in the morning at the National Funeral Hall in Hanoi. The funeral organizing board is headed by Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong.

Among the mourners are Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, and foreign leaders including Cambodian Prime Minister Hunsen and President of the Lao Front for National Construction Central Committee Saysomphone Phomvihane.

Writing the funeral guest book, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc praised Mr. Le Duc Anh as a genius leader with a far-sighted, strategic vision and a staunch revolutionary who made enormous contributions to national construction and defense.

The burial ceremony will take place at 5 p.m the same day at the Ho Chi Minh City Cemetery. The ceremonies are broadcast live on the Voice of Vietnam and Vietnam Television.

General Le Duc Anh was a 4-tenure Politburo member and 3-tenure National Assembly deputy. He served as Vietnam's President from 1992 to 1997. He passed away on April 22 in Hanoi at the age of 99. During the two-day national mourning on Friday and Saturday, national flags will be flown at half-mast at offices and public places, and recreational and entertainment activities will be stopped.

Many foreign leaders and friends have extended condolences over the death of Mr. Le Duc Anh.

President of Mongolia Khaltmaa Battulga and President of Nicaragua Daniel Ortega Saavedra sent letters of sympathy to Party leader and President Nguyen Phu Trong.

Prime Minister of Cambodia Hun Sen offered his condolences to Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand Don Pramudwinai cabled a message of sympathy to Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh.

Chairman of the Japan-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Alliance and secretary-general of the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan Toshihiro Nikai extended condolences to Vietnamese Ambassador to Japan Vu Hong Nam.

Source: VOV5