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Lao, Vietnamese women mark year of friendship

The close relationship between Lao and Vietnamese women, which has seen them become like sisters, has been a factor in the success of the struggle for national liberation in the past and in present-day national defence and development in Laos and Vietnam.

Their history of solidarity was celebrated at a meeting between Lao and Vietnamese women held in Vientiane on Wednesday to denote 2017 as a year of friendship and solidarity between the two countries.

Deputy Prime Minister Dr Sonexay Siphandone, who is deputy head of the guiding committee for the celebration of historic dates between Laos and Vietnam, and Vice President of the Lao National Assembly, Ms Sisay Leudethmounsone, attended the event.

In her remarks at the meeting, Lao Women's Union President Dr Inlavanh Keobounphanh reminded the audience of the geographic and historical circumstances and the underlying principles of the two nations' remarkable and longstanding relationship.

She highlighted the contributions of Lao and Vietnamese women, who stood shoulder-to-shoulder with men in fighting against invading powers while also carrying out other duties on the home front.

“Lao and Vietnamese women stood shoulder to shoulder with men in the fight while also looking after children and mobilising youth groups,” Dr Inlavanh said.

“Lao and Vietnamese women grew crops and supplied them to those on the frontlines; they were also informers, and hid the soldiers of the liberation forces from the enemy,” she added.

This close cooperation has deepened the friendship between the two countries' Women's Unions, which were set up following the fight for national liberation. This has served to continuously and persistently enrich their special solidarity.

The continuous and persistent cooperation and mutual assistance between the women's organisations and their contribution to enhancing the friendship and solidarity between the two nations has now been rewarded by the Parties and governments of the two countries.

An awards ceremony at the meeting on Wednesday saw the Lao government award a Second Class Issara Order to Vietnam's Women's Union President Nguyen Thi Thu Ha, a Third Class Issara Order to the four vice presidents of the union, and a Third Class Labour Medal to women's union branches in nine provinces of Vietnam.

The government of Vietnam and the Vietnamese Women's Union also presented the leaders of the Lao Women's Union with Friendship Orders and Memorial Medals, and the Lao government awarded the top leaders of the Vietnamese Women's Union with First Class Issara Orders and Friendship Orders.

Speaking at the event, Vietnam's Women's Union President Nguyen Thi Thu Ha referred to the importance of the cooperation between the two women's organisations in serving people-oriented diplomacy.

She praised the achievements of Lao women, who she said participated in law-making to protect human rights including the rights of women, Lao women's participation on the political stage, and other valuable activities.

Mrs Nguyen Thi Thu Ha noted the direction of this cooperation, which is now focusing on the advancement of women, the protection of women and children, and halting trafficking in women.

She vowed that this tradition of cooperation and mutual assistance would continue, with more active participation in socio-economic development and integration towards achieving the international development agenda in 2030.

The two women's unions also signed an agreement on their cooperation until 2020.

 

By Somxay Sengdara
(Latest Update September 8, 2017)


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