HANOI, Sept 9, 2016 – From September 6-7, U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Ted Osius, joined by Leon Fuerth, former National Security Advisor for Vice President Al Gore, and Mr. Vo Hong Nam, General Vo Nguyen Giap’s youngest son, visited Dien Bien Province to stress the importance of education and history.
During the two-day visit, the Ambassador met Dien Bien People’s Committee Chairman Mua A Son, spoke with high school and primary students, and participated in a cultural performance with HIV/AIDS community outreach workers. To conclude the trip, Mr. Nam shared an important piece of Vietnam’s history with Ambassador Osius on a visit to General Giap’s Forest Command Center and Colonel De Castries’ Bunker.
“Vietnam has a very proud history, and it’s good for the people of both Vietnam and other countries to understand this history and culture. I’m very happy to be here and learn firsthand from General Giap’s son, because it’s not just the history of Vietnam but also of his family,” noted Ambassador Osius while visiting General Giap’s Forest Command Center in Muong Phang.
During the visit, the Ambassador met with students, administrators, and teachers from Le Quy Don Gifted High School, including a U.S. English Language program alumna and an Embassy-supported Fulbright English Teaching Assistant. In addition, the Ambassador talked with students about topics ranging from study abroad to advice on success.
While visiting Muong Phang Primary School, Ambassador Osius and Mr. Nam discussed the importance of public-private partnerships in strengthening Vietnam’s education system. General Giap’s family, the Boeing Corporation, the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation, and the Dien Bien People’s Committee cooperated to build and equip the school with computers, Internet connectivity, and clean drinking water.
The Ambassador had dinner with HIV/AIDS outreach workers who are improving the livelihoods of affected populations in Dien Bien with support from the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). Following dinner, the Ambassador attended a Thai and H’mong cultural performance to promote HIV/AIDS awareness in remote communities.