Regular Press Briefing by MOFA’s Spokesperson Luong Thanh Nghi on January 12th, 2012
THE 1ST REGULAR PRESS CONFERENCE
(Ha Noi, January 12 2012)
His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Emir of the State of Qatar will pay an official visit to Viet Nam (from 16th to 17th January 2012)
At the invitation by President Truong Tan Sang, Emir of the State of Qatar, His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, will pay an official visit to Viet Nam from the 16th to 17th January 2012. This is a visit by the highest Qatar’s leader to Viet Nam since the establishment of bilateral diplomatic relations in 1993.
This visit is aimed at strengthening multifaceted cooperation between Viet Nam and Qatar in particular and between Viet Nam and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) in general. Both sides will discuss measures to advance bilateral cooperation in all areas, namely politics – diplomacy, economics, infrastructure development, education and training as well as regional and international issues of mutual concern.
Emir of the State of Qatar, His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani is expected to meet with President Truong Tan Sang and other leaders of Viet Nam, attend the Business Forum and visit some economic and cultural facilities in Ha Noi.
II. ANSWERS TO MEDIA QUESTION
1. Question: How do you review foreign affairs in 2011 and what are orientations for 2012?
Answer: Despite complex and unpredictable developments in the world and slow global economic recovery which have adverse impacts on Viet Nam’s economy, Viet Nam has recorded significant achievements in its foreign affairs. The 11th National Party Congress put forward the policy of “active and pro-active international integration” and “Viet Nam is a responsible member of the international community”. With this policy, foreign affairs have been advanced comprehensively in all areas of economics, politics, defense, security, culture and society, etc at all bilateral, regional, multilateral and global levels.
In this spirit, Viet Nam continues to strengthen its relations and multifaceted cooperation with neighboring countries such as Laos, Cambodia, China, ASEAN countries and important partners; actively and pro-actively participate in international and regional fora; and contribute to global efforts for peace, international security, food security, climate change, energy security, nuclear security and global challenges.
Viet Nam’s leaders visited neighboring and regional countries, major powers and traditional friends. These visits have deepened relations between Viet Nam and other countries in a stable, substantial and effective manner and elevated Viet Nam’s relations with several important partners.
The foreign service has worked closely with other agencies to harmoniously address border and territory issues, contributing to safeguarding national sovereignty and interest, strengthening cooperation and friendship with other countries and mainteining peace, stability and cooperation in the region.
Citizen protection has also been a priority for the foreign service which promptly addressed incidents involving Vietnamese citizens’ life and property abroad. The foreign service continued to advise Viet Nam’s leaders on global economic situation for domestic economic governance, fully mobilized external resources for macro-ecnomic stabalization and economic restructuring, promoted Viet Nam’s image to international friends, undertaken practical measures to support Vietnamese people living abroad and created favorable conditions for overseas Vietnamese to settle in host countries as well as visit, invest and live in Viet Nam.
In 2012, the foreign service will focus on following areas: to realize the policy of comprehensive diplomacy, active and proactive international integration put forward by the 11th National Party Congress; to continue to deepen relations with neighboring and regional countries, major powers and traditional friends in a stable and sustainable manner; to strengthen mutual trust and multifaceted cooperation for common interest with other countries; to advance Viet Nam’s profile and role in multilateral fora; to participate actively and proactively in ASEAN, APEC, ASEM, UN and related mechanisms in an responsible manner; to maintain peace and stability and to safeguard sovereignty, sovereign rights and national interests in the East Sea.
2. Question: You just said that the foreign service paid special attention to citizen protection and addressed effectively incidents related to Vietnamese citizens abroad. Could you clarify on this issue?
Answer: Many cases related to citizen protection have occurred last year and early this year: situation in Libya, earthquake and tsunami in Japan and most recently Vinalines Queen and Vietnamese fishermen captured. In all these cases, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has always played an active role, working closely with other Vietnamese ministries and agencies and instructing Vietnamese representative missions to cooperate with foreign competent agencies to properly address these cases, guaranteeing safety, life, legitimate rights and interests of Vietnamese citizens. Notably, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs coordinated with other ministries, agencies and embassies of Viet Nam abroad to safely evacuate over 10,000 Vietnamese citizens from Libya and those from earthquake and tsunami areas in Japan, intervened and assisted in bringing home 1094 fishermen and 113 fishing boats captured in South East Asian countries. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs recently cooperated and called for international efforts in searching and rescuing Vinalines Queen crew members. In 2012, citizen protection continues to be one priority of the Ministry.
3. Reuters: Could you provide Viet Nam’s reaction to the announcement of the new US defense strategy, including increased US military presence in Asia?
Answer: Peace, stability and development are the common aspiration of countries in the Asia – Pacific region. Viet Nam welcomes all efforts aimed at enhancing peace, stability and development in the Asia – Pacific region and will continue to work closely with other countries for these goals.
4. Question: Could you provide information about the ongoing EU-Viet Nam dialogue on human rights issues which is taking place today January 12, 2012?
Answer: In line with Viet Nam’s policy of opening dialogues on human rights with countries and international organizations, in implementation of the agreement between Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Viet Nam and the European External Action Service, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Viet Nam holds the Viet Nam – EU human rights dialogue on January 12 2012 in Ha Noi. In this dialogue session, the two sides exchange information on issues of shared interests related to human rights including right to freedom of speech, right to freedom of press, right to freedom of religion and belief, rights of ethnic minorities and migrant issues, etc. Since 2002, the Viet Nam – EU human rights dialogue has been a significant forum for enhanced information exchange and increased mutual understanding in the fields of human rights policy and achievements between the EU and Viet Nam./.
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