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Former HCMC vice chairman receives eight-year jail term



Nguyen Thanh Tai, former vice chairman of HCMC, on Sunday was sentenced eight years on the charges of violating regulations on the management and use of State assets, causing losses and wastefulness.

Ông Nguyễn Thành Tài lãnh án 8 năm tù

Nguyen Thanh Tai, former vice chairman of HCMC

Aside from Tai, the municipal People’s Court handed down jail sentences to four other defendants with the same charges. They are Le Thi Thanh Thuy, chairwoman of Mayflower Co., Ltd and Lavenue Investment JSC; Dao Anh Kiet, former director of the HCMC Department of Natural Resources and Environment; Truong Van Ut, former deputy head of the department’s land management section; and Nguyen Hoai Nam, former secretary of District 2’s Party Committee.

A land lot at 8-12 Le Duan Boulevard in HCMC’s District 1 is the State’s asset. Following the prime minister’s Decision No.9 to rearrange public assets, the municipal government decided to develop a hotel at the location, select an appropriate contractor to conduct the project without accepting the joint venture business model.

Taking advantage of the asset rearrangement, the five defendants had committed violations on the management and use of the State assets.

Tai was fully aware that the land lot is owned by the State. However, Tai signed many documents going against regulations to allow Thuy to contribute 30% of capital to the project and decided to lease out the land lot without competitive bidding.

Overall, Thuy was sentenced to five years in prison. Kiet received a prison term of five years, Nam four years and Ut three years. SGT



Vietnam, India defence ministers hold online talks



Minister of Defence General Ngo Xuan Lich and his Indian counterpart Rajnath Singh held an online discussion on November 27.

Vietnam, India defence ministers hold online talks hinh anh 1

The Vietnamese delegation at the event 

Lich congratulated India on being elected as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council (UNSC) for the 2021-22 term.

The two agreed that the comprehensive strategic partnership between their countries has been strengthened over time, benefitting the peoples of both and contributing to maintaining peace, stability, and development in the region and the world.

They also discussed the results of their respective COVID-19 prevention and control efforts, and the effect the pandemic had on carrying out defence cooperation activities.

The ministers agreed to return to such activities as soon as COVID-19 is fully brought under control, in which they will further bolster cooperation in military medicine, UN peacekeeping operations, the defence industry, and human resources, among others.

Lich expressed his gratitude towards India for its support for and coordination with Vietnam as the Chair of ASEAN in 2020 and a non-permanent member of the UNSC in 2020-21, especially within the framework of the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus (ADMM+).

He also invited Singh to attend the online ADMM+ and a ceremony marking a decade of the multilateral meetings, slated for December, and to visit Vietnam once the pandemic has been repelled.

After the talks, the ministers witnessed the signing of a cooperation agreement in hydrography./.VNA


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PM attends opening ceremony of 17th CAEXPO, CABIS



Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc on November 27 attended the opening ceremony of the 17th China-ASEAN Expo (CAEXPO) and China-ASEAN Business and Investment Summit (CABIS) in Nanning city of China via a video conference.

PM attends opening ceremony of 17th CAEXPO, CABIS hinh anh 1

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc in the video message to the 17th China-ASEAN Expo and China-ASEAN Business and Investment Summit 

In his video message to the event, the Government leader said as the global economy is being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, ASEAN-China cooperation continues to see encouraging progress, especially in economic and trade interaction, and mutual support in the pandemic response. For more than 10 consecutive years, China has been ASEAN’s largest trade partner. Notably, ASEAN became China’s largest trade partner for the first time in the first six months of 2020 as the trade turnover amounted to 300 billion USD, in which the Vietnam-China figure accounted for 20 percent.

He went on to say that this year, during Vietnam’s Chairmanship and under the theme of “”Cohesive and Responsive”, ASEAN has redoubled its efforts to strengthen solidarity and unity, kept the pace of cooperation, responded effectively to the pandemic, enjoyed fruitful engagement with its partners, and reinforced its centrality in the regional security issues.

Most importantly, at the 37th ASEAN Summit and related Summits held in mid-November, the ten ASEAN member states and five partners, including China, signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), creating a vast market of 2.2 billion people and 26.2 trillion USD in combined GDP, he said.

He shared that Vietnam is striving to fulfil the dual goal of curbing the pandemic and fostering economic rebound. At CAEXPO, it has been the country with the largest number of participating businesses and exhibition stalls among ASEAN member states. This time, Vietnam’s virtual stalls stay open until the end of 2020, thus offering huge trade opportunities for firms.

Regarding Vietnam-China ties, the PM said 2020 is also an important milestone in the bilateral relations. Vietnamese General Secretary and State President Nguyen Phu Trong and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping have held two telephone discussions where they agreed on future directions for deepening the two nations’ good neighborliness and Comprehensive Strategic Cooperative Partnership.

“Vietnam is joining fellow ASEAN members to realize the ASEAN Community Vision 2025, expand mutually beneficial cooperation with our neighbour China, on the basis of the UN Charter and international law, for peace, stability, and prosperity in the region and the world,” he noted.

Speaking at the opening ceremony in Nanning city, Chinese Party General Secretary and President Xi Jinping said China considers ASEAN a priority of its neighbourhood diplomacy and is ready to work with the bloc to promote multifaceted cooperation and maintain prosperous and positive development in the region.

This year, nearly 80 Vietnamese firms’ branches in China display products such as agro-forestry-fishery products, processed food, wooden furniture and handicrafts, consumer goods, investment and tourism products, and services. In addition, over 100 Vietnamese enterprises participate in the fair online, showcasing agro-forestry-fishery products and processed food, consumer goods, woodworks and handicrafts.

On this occasion, the Ministry of Industry and Trade will also cooperate with the CAEXPO Organising Committee to organise an online Vietnam-China trade exchange conference on food and beverages./.VNA


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Vietnam considers sending more female soldiers to join UN peacekeeping missions



Vietnam will study policies to increase the number of female soldiers taking part in United Nations (UN) peacekeeping operations, according to Colonel General Hoang Xuan Chien, Minister of National Defense.

Chien made the statement at an international symposium on the role of women and the prevention of the COVID-19 pandemic in peacekeeping operations, which was organized by the Ministry of National Defense and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) on Thursday.

Vietnam joined global peacekeeping operations in 2014, he said.

In 2018, Vietnam sent the first female officer to join the UN peacekeeping mission in South Sudan.

In October 2018, the Southeast Asian country successfully deployed the first level-two field hospital to the UN mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) in Bentiu, with ten females out of 63 officers, health workers, and doctors.

Vietnam’s second level-two field hospital to UNMISS was put into operation in November 2019 to replace the first one, retaining the same number of female soldiers on duty there.

The rate is higher than the target set by the UN, Chien said, stressing that Vietnamese female soldiers are appreciated by the UN for their professionalism, ability to fulfill missions, and stealing the limelight in many UN activities in field missions.

This supplied photo shows Lieutenant Colonel Nguyen Thi Lien sewing face masks to give to colleagues in the mission and the people of Bangui City, Central African Republic.

This supplied photo shows Lieutenant Colonel Nguyen Thi Lien sewing face masks to give to colleagues in the mission and the people of Bangui City, Central African Republic.

Women also took the initiative in disease prevention efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the Central African Republic, Lieutenant Colonel Nguyen Thi Lien sewed more than 500 face masks and gave them to colleagues in the mission and the people of Bangui City.

Lien received a letter of merit from the leaders of the Central African Republic and the United Nations mission.

At Thursday’s conference, Lieutenant General Chien said the ministry would consider increasing the participation of female soldiers in peacekeeping activities, especially those applying to work in higher positions at the UN headquarters and the mission headquarters.

The ministry has directed agencies to ensure preferential policies to help women feel secure to participate in peacekeeping and improve their performance.

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