President of the Cambodian National Assembly Samdech Heng Samrin led a parliamentary delegation to pay tribute to the former leader of Vietnam at the service organised by the Vietnamese Embassy in Phnom Penh on May 3.

In the condolence book, he wrote that Gen. Le Duc Anh was a close friend of Cambodia who greatly helped to liberate the Cambodian people from the Pol Pot genocidal regime and to recover and develop the country.

Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Royal Palace Kong Sam Ol also came to pay tribute to former President Le Duc Anh and handed over King Norodom Sihamoni’s condolence letter.

Cambodian King Norodom Sihanouk (second, right) receives President Le Duc Anh (second, left) on August 8, 1995 during the latter's official visit to Cambodia

Other Cambodian officials, including Senate President Samdech Say Chhum and Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Council for Agricultural and Rural Development Yim Chhay Ly, also showed their respect for Le Duc Anh at the ceremony in Phnom Penh.

Vietnamese Ambassador to Cambodia Vu Quang Minh said General Le Duc Anh directly made enormous contributions to the two countries’ friendship.

From 1981 to 1986, he served as Deputy Defense Minister and Commander of Vietnam’s volunteer soldiers in Cambodia. He was Defense Minister of Vietnam at the time the country’s volunteer soldiers fulfilled their mission in Cambodia in 1989, the diplomat noted.

Also on May 3, the Vietnamese Embassy in India held a respect-paying ceremony.

Vijay Thakur Singh, Secretary (East) at the Indian Ministry of External Affairs, wrote in the condolence book that Gen. Le Duc Anh was an excellent leader with considerable contributions to Vietnam’s development. The Indian people will always keep in mind his role in enhancing the India-Vietnam friendship.

Indian officials and representatives of diplomatic corps in the country also came to pay homage to the former leader.

A similar ceremony took place at the Vietnamese Embassy in Thailand the same day.

In his note, First Vice-President of Thailand’s National Legislative Assembly Surachai Liengboonlertchai expressed his deepest condolences to the people of Vietnam on the passing of Le Duc Anh.

Thai Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai, Chairman of the Thailand-Vietnam Parliamentary Friendship Group Sakchai Tanaboonchai, along with many diplomats and Vietnamese people in the country, also attended the event.

Officials, diplomats and Vietnamese people in Russia, Singapore and New Zealand also paid homage to the former leader at the ceremonies held by the Vietnamese embassies in the countries.

The overseas ceremonies are scheduled to last through May 4.

General Le Duc Anh, who served as President of Vietnam from September 1992 to December 1997, passed away on April 22 at the age of 99.

Vietnam has declared two days of national mourning for him on May 3 and 4.

Source: VNA