Large crowds gather to pay tribute to departing General

From 7.30am on October 12, people from all walks of life queued in large numbers to pay their respects to Vietnam’s Legendary General Vo Nguyen Giap at ceremonies organized in Hanoi, his native land Quang Binh Province and Ho Chi Minh City.

Party leader Nguyen Phu Trong along with other State and high-ranking officials place hands on coffin of General (Photo: SGGP)

The ceremonies took place at the same time at the National Funeral House on 5 Tran Thanh Tong in Hanoi, at the People’s Committee in Quang Binh Province in the late General’s homeland, and at  Thong Nhat Hall in the Reunification Palace in HCMC.

At the National Funeral House on 5 Tran Thanh Tong Street in Hanoi, the legendary General’s coffin lay in State, wrapped in the National Flag and his Kepi.

Top leaders included Viet Nam Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, President Truong Tan Sang, National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, Vice Chairman and General Secretary of the Vietnam Fatherland Front Vu Trong Kim, and Defense Minister General Phung Quang Thanh.

Former Party General Secretaries Do Muoi, Le Kha Phieu and Nong Duc Manh, former Presidents Tran Duc Luong, Nguyen Minh Triet, former Prime Minister Phan Van Khai, and former National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Van An were also present to pay their last respects to the legendary General.

HCMC Party Committee Secretary Le Thanh Hai also led many delegations to pay last homage to the departing General.

General Secretary of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party and President of Laos Choummaly Sayasone, Honorary Chairman of the Cambodian People’s Party and Chairman of the Cambodian National Assembly Heng Samrin led delegations to pay their last respects to General Vo Nguyen Giap at the National Funeral House.

A delegation from Mozambique led by former Defense Minister Alberto Joaquim Chipande and a high-ranking delegation from Algeria led by Mohamed Cherif Abbas, attended the ceremony.

Abroad embassies, diplomatic missions, international organizations and military attachés in Vietnam held services in memory of the legendary General.

Hanoians queue to bid farewell to the General as the coffin moves past (Photo: SGGP)

The national funeral committee for the General invited residents who waited outside the National Funeral House to pay their last respects to the General.

In the flower garden in front of the National Funeral House, thousands of people sat red eyed watching a film of the funeral procession of their beloved General.

Many came from far and distant districts. They hired guest-houses to stay and many of them were foreigners.

As more and more people flocked and thronged the streets around the National Funeral Hall where the General’s body lay in State, the national funeral committee announced an open all night service for the public to pay their last respects to the revered General.

In Quang Binh Province, many leaders, people from every walk of life, and relatives of the General gathered at the premises of the People’s Committee to pay their last tribute to the legendary General, an eminent child of Quang Binh Province in the Fallen Soldier (Hon Si Tu) song.

According to the national funeral committee, more than 600 delegations and over 25,000 locals arrived at the premises of the People’s Committee to burn incense in memory of the General.

It is estimated around 15,000 people queued up in a ten kilometer stretch along the Kien Giang River in An Xa Village, where the General was born, to wait their turn to pay last tribute to the revered General.

At the same time, the organizing committee in Ho Chi Minh City said 773 delegations and more than 120,000 people from all corners of the country were in the City to pay their last respects to the departing General.
In many parts of the country, people set up altars to pray for their beloved General.

The General’s coffin was covered with the National Flag and carried by a military hearse attached with cannon (Photo: SGGP)
Despite rain, a large number of people gathered to pay their last respects to the departing General in Quang Binh Province on morning of October 12 (Photo: SGGP)

By staff writers - translated by Uyen Phuong

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