A flag-raising ceremony to celebrate the 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games 31) will take place on May 11, with the attendance of 400 delegates, at the My Dinh National Sports Complex, Hanoi.

 A number of people join the 31-day countdown to the SEA Games 31. Photo: Duy Khanh, Lai Tan

According to the organizing committee, 50 Vietnamese delegates, representatives from the embassies of ASEAN countries in Vietnam, as well as domestic and foreign reporters will participate in the event.

The ceremony aims to welcome the sports delegations to SEA Games 31, and encourage the sportsmanship of athletes.

The event also contributes to presenting Vietnamese cultural identity, and people to international friends. 

To mark the 31 days left for the 31st SEA Games Opening Ceremony (May 12) in Vietnam, Hanoi launched a 31-day countdown to the SEA Games 31 at the Hoan Kiem Lake on April 11.

SEA Games 31, themed “For a stronger South East Asia”, will take place from May 6 to 23. The opening ceremony will be held on May 12, but some competitions will start on May 6. The closing ceremony will be held on May 23.

The event will be held in Hanoi and 11 neighboring cities and provinces, including Quang Ninh, Bac Ninh, Vinh Phuc, Nam Dinh, Hai Duong, Ha Nam, Ninh Binh, Hoa Binh, Phu Tho, Bac Giang and Haiphong Port City.

It will feature 40 sports with 526 events and is expected to attract around 10,000 athletes from 11 Southeast Asian countries. This is the second time, Vietnam has hosted the SEA Games, the first time was in 2003.