Saturday , September 30 2023

Service held to remember fallen Vietnamese peacekeeper


A memorial service was held for Lieutenant Colonel Đỗ Anh, who died while on a UN peacekeeping mission, on Wednesday. — VNA/VnExpress News Photo

HÀ NỘI — A memorial service was held for Lieutenant Colonel Đỗ Anh, who died while on a UN peacekeeping mission, on Wednesday at the National Funeral Hall in Hà Nội.

He was laid to rest at the Nhổn martyrs’ cemetery in the capital city’s Bắc Từ Liêm District on the same day.

Major General Hoàng Kim Phụng, director of the Vietnam Department of Peacekeeping Operations, said: “Lieutenant Colonel Đỗ Anh is a young officer who died while on the mission. His sacrifice has been highly appreciated by the United Nations. His passing is a great loss, especially when Việt Nam is deploying more peacekeeping missions.”

“This is the greatest loss in the last eight years since we participated in the UN peacekeeping missions. It is the loss for the army, the Vietnam Department of Peacekeeping Operations and his family as well as for the whole nation as we are having proud citizens participating in peacekeeping missions with great humane and humanitarian values.” 

The Central African Republic where Lieutenant Colonel Đỗ Anh was based is an area with several difficulties on climate, weather and the widespread pandemic.

“There was no fighting in the area because there had been peace agreements. However, small animosities and conflicts and even armed conflicts persisted. Lieutenant Colonel Đỗ Anh died during a peacekeeping mission of the UN, not combat operations,” he said.

Anh was born in 1983 in the northern province of Nam Định and lived in Bắc Từ Liêm, Hà Nội, and was sent to the Central African Republic to work as a military observer in 2021.

He passed away on January 6, 2022 (local time) at field hospital No. 3 in Nakasero, Kampala, Uganda.

On January 8, the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic coordinated with the Vietnamese Ministry of National Defence to hold an online memorial service for Anh.

Later, on January 15, the Vietnam Department of Peacekeeping Operations held a ceremony to receive his remains from the UN.

With his dedication to the revolutionary cause of the Party, people and army and the UN peacekeeping mission, he was recognised as a martyr and was awarded a certificate of national merit.

He was also conferred the third-class “Fatherland Defense Order” and first-class Glorious Fighter Medal and promoted from Major to Lieutenant Colonel.

Jean Pierre Lacroix, the UN Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations, has sent a letter of condolence to Permanent Representative of Việt Nam to the UN, Đặng Đình Quý, expressing the appreciation for the great contributions of Lieutenant Colonel Đỗ Anh to the peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic.

Writing in the funeral guest book, Caitlin Wiesen, the UNDP Resident Representative noted that his aspiration to contribute to world peace through participating in peacekeeping missions will be remembered.

Group Captain Bea Walcot, the UK Defence Attaché to Việt Nam, shared the condolence for the nation which lost a soldier who has spent his life serving the nation.

Vietnamese high-ranking officials including Senior Lieutenant General Hoàng Xuân Chiến, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Đặng Hoàng Giang and Deputy Defence Minister and Lieutenant General Phùng Sĩ Tấn, Commander of Military Region 2 and Ambassador Nguyễn Phương Nga, President of the Việt Nam Union of Friendship Organisations, also participated in the funeral.

Việt Nam has sent 250 servicemen and staff to UN peacekeeping missions at the UN Headquarters (New York, USA) and other missions in South Sudan and the Central African Republic.

In terms of individual operation officers, Viet Nam has sent 61 service tours of military officers serving as staff officers, military observers and liaison officers. The country has also dispatched field hospitals involving 189 medical staff.

The country is also preparing to send 191 officers to the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei in the first quarter of this year. — VnExpress News


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