Hungarian Friends Commemorate 50th Anniversary of the Paris Peace Accords

Between January 26, 1973, and May 9, 1975, Hungary sent 636 military and civilian personnel, border guards, and diplomats to Vietnam for peacekeeping operations.

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On December 20, the Vietnamese Embassy in Hungary and the liaison board of Vietnamese war veterans in Hungary co-organized a ceremony to mark the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Paris Agreement on ending the war and restoring peace in Vietnam (January 27, 1973) and the 78th anniversary of the establishment of the Vietnam People’s Army (December 22, 1944).

The ceremony was attended by representatives of Hungary-Vietnam Friendship Association, Vietnamese Associations in Hungary, and Hungarian veterans and officials who once participated in the International Commission for Control and Supervision (ICCS). ICCS is also known as the Four-Party Commission, which was responsible for monitoring the enforcement of the Paris Agreement.

Nearly 50 years ago, on January 27, 1973, in Paris (France), an agreement on ending the war and restoring peace in Vietnam was signed. It was the result of the arduous and longest diplomatic struggle in Vietnam history, with 202 open joint meetings in 4 years, 8 months, and 14 days (from May 13, 1968, to January 27, 1973).

Hungarian Friends Commemorate 50th Anniversary of the Paris Peace Accords
Hungarian veterans and cadres who have participated in ICCS taking souvenir photos at the ceremony. (Photo: VNA)

Speaking at the ceremony, Vietnamese Ambassador to Hungary Nguyen Thi Bich Thao emphasized that the Paris Peace Accords was the result of the unyielding and indomitable struggle of the Vietnamese people in both regions of the country. It marks a new turning point in the nation’s resistance war against the US, a milestone in the golden history of Vietnam’s revolutionary diplomacy.

On behalf of the State of Vietnam, Ambassador Nguyen Thi Bich Thao expressed sincere thanks and deep gratitude to Hungarian friends joint the ICCS. She noted that between January 26, 1973, and May 9, 1975, Hungary sent 636 military and civilian personnel, border guards, and diplomats to Vietnam for peacekeeping operations, of whom two laid down their lives while on duty in April 1973.

The great contributions of Hungarian friends have been recognized by the State and the people of Vietnam. Hungarian veterans and officials participated in the establishment of the Hungary-Vietnam Friendship Association in 1989 and contribute to the persistent and fervent connection between the two countries.

Botz Laszlo is the Chairman of the Hungary-Vietnamese Friendship Association and also one of the Hungarian soldiers sent to Vietnam to participate in ICCS on January 26, 1973. On behalf of Hungarian veterans and cadres to join the 4-Party Committee, Botz Laszlo expressed his very first feelings when he set foot in Hanoi about 50 years ago.

Hungarian Friends Commemorate 50th Anniversary of the Paris Peace Accords
Botz Laszlo, Chairman of the Hung-Vietnamese Friendship Association, was one of the Hungarian soldiers sent to Vietnam to participate in ICCS in the first batch on January 26, 1973. (Photo: VNA)

He said the image of bright, happy faces and the warm welcome in Hanoi made him fall in love with Vietnam at first sight and these beautiful memories follow him for the rest of his life.

He affirmed the pride of a Hungarian soldier and his affection for the country and people of Vietnam. They were the driving forces for all of his activities during his years on duty in Vietnam.

Also on this occasion, he expressed his gratitude toward the spirit of the soldiers of the Vietnam People’s Army who have fought for the peace of the country.

Also at the ceremony, delegates and guests reviewed the heroic and glorious tradition of the Vietnam People’s Army over the past 78 years. Since its establishment, the Vietnam People’s Army has developed constantly to protect national independence and reunification, making worthy contributions to the cause of building and defending the country.

Ambassador Nguyen Thi Bich Thao emphasized the meaning of this ceremony in honoring the value of peace and independence. She also affirmed that the solidarity and support of the international community is an important factor in the struggle for independence and freedom and in building Vietnam today.

Tracy Dao