|UN Day of Vesak 2019 is organized at Ha Nam province, Vietnam
Having organized the UN Day of Vesak three times, Vietnam has affirmed its commitment to ensuring freedom of belief and religion and promoting diplomacy and international religious cooperation. Hosting the event shows Vietnam’s responsibility and support for the UN.
Reality of freedom of belief and religion in Vietnam
Themed “Buddhist approach to global leadership and shared responsibilities for sustainable societies”, the Vesak celebration 2019 realizes the participation of the Vietnamese government and the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha in achieving the UN millennium goals.
Most Venerable Thich Duc Thien, Vice President and Secretary General of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha, said: “It illustrates the Party’s guidelines and State policies on freedom of religion and shows foreign friends the reality of freedom of belief and religion in Vietnam. The previous two Vesak celebrations proved that Vietnam cares about people’s religious life, including Buddhist followers. This event affirms Vietnam’s responsibility to the UN and the international community.”
Monk Thich Gia Quang, Vice President of the Organizing Committee of the UN Day of Vesak 2019, said: “Hosting the UN Day of Vesak is an honor for the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha, which confirms the role of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha in Vietnam and the world. It shows the Party and State’s respect for religion. Vietnamese Buddhism is closely linked with Buddhism worldwide. The celebration has promoted the image of Vietnam as a peace-loving country.”
Raising Vietnam’s role and prestige
Bui Huu Duoc, Head of the Buddhism Department of the Government's Committee for Religious Affairs, said the UN Day of Vesak is an important diplomatic event to raise the status of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha internationally: “This is an important event of Buddhism as well as of Vietnam. Buddhism celebrates Buddha’s values. Vietnam received 1,600 participants from 100 countries, who greatly appreciated Vietnam’s excellent organization and the Vietnamese Buddhist followers’ friendly and respectful reception.”
The UN Day of Vesak 2019 in Hanoi conveyed a message of world peace. The Ha Nam joint statement released at the closing session expressed a consensus among the Buddhist Sanghas of many countries in building sustainable societies despite social, political, and economic upheaval. Hosting the event was Vietnam’s contribution to world peace and the unity of humankind and has elevated Vietnam’s status internationally.