Vietnam welcomes Russian leader Putin and promises to strengthen ties

Vietnamese President To Lam congratulates Putin on his re-election and praises Russia’s achievements


Russian President Vladimir Putin was welcomed to Vietnam with a 21-gun salute at a military ceremony on Thursday, as one of the communist-led country’s top leaders welcomed a comprehensive strategic partnership with Moscow and vowed to strengthen ties.

Vietnamese President To Lam congratulated Putin on his re-election and praised Russia’s achievements, including “domestic political stability”, when the two met in Hanoi.

“Once again, congratulations to our comrade for receiving overwhelming support during the recent presidential election, which underlines the confidence of the Russian people,” Lam said.

Putin responded by saying that strengthening a comprehensive strategic partnership with Vietnam was one of Russia’s priorities.

The Russian leader said he respected the dialogue with the regional bloc, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, in which he said Vietnam played an active role.

Russia was hit by US-led Western sanctions after invading Ukraine in February 2022 in what Moscow calls a “special military operation”. In March 2023, the Hague-based International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant for Putin for alleged war crimes in Ukraine, charges he denies.

Neither Vietnam nor Russia are members of the ICC.

The Southeast Asian country will be the third country Putin has visited, after China and North Korea, since he was sworn in for a fifth term in May.

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