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Activities mark traditional new year abroad

Hanoi (VNA) – The Vietnamese Embassy in Japan on January 17 held a banquet on the occasion of the upcoming Lunar New Year, which falls on January 26.

Speaking at the banquet, Vietnamese Ambassador Nguyen Phu Binh reviewed outstanding events in the Vietnam-Japan relationship over the past year, including activities to mark the 35 th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties and the signing of the Economic Partnership Agreement in December 2008.

The ambassador said that 2009 will be a busy year of exchange and cooperation activities between the two countries, including Japanese Prince Naruhito’s visit to Vietnam next month and a Japan visit by Party General Secretary Nong Duc Manh.

Iwao Matsuda, Vice President of the Japan-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Federation, said that the two countries will jointly hold a Japanese festival in central Quang Nam province’s Hoi An ancient town in August this year.

According to Vietnam News Agency correspondents in Brussels , the Hoa Sen Association, an organisation of overseas Vietnamese patriots in Belgium , also hosted a new year meeting which drew the participation of numerous Vietnamese people who are living and working in Belgium , France and Luxembourg .

Addressing the event, Vietnamese Ambassador to Belgium Nguyen Manh Dung affirmed that the overseas Vietnamese community is always an inseparable part of the Vietnamese nation.

The Tet atmosphere also pervaded the whole of the Vietnam House in Ottawa , Canada , as nearly 300 overseas Vietnamese who are living and studying in Canada gathered to welcome the Year of the Ox on January 17.

Vietnamese Ambassador to Canada Nguyen Duc Hung said that the annual meeting offered a chance for all overseas Vietnamese people in Canada to meet and share their achievements over the past year.

He said he was pleased with the development of the overseas Vietnamese community in Canada , making remarkable contributions to the solidarity, friendship and cooperation between Vietnam and Canada .

Joining the Tet atmosphere, around 700 overseas Vietnamese in San Francisco were present at the War Memorial Hall, where the UN Charter was officially signed 55 years ago to share joys over the new year.

On behalf of local authorities, senator Leeland Yee spoke highly of the Vietnamese community’s contributions to the development of the state and expressed wish to boost multi-faceted cooperation between California State and Vietnam .

He said he hoped that the Vietnamese community will serve as a bridge between Vietnam and California .

The participants had a chance to enjoy delicious Vietnamese dishes and special art performances by Vietnamese artists from home and abroad.

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