B: Shivendu Paul of the Metali Listeners’ Club of India wrote: “Greetings for the 77th Vietnam National Day (September 2) and 77th Birthday of the Voice of Vietnam, (September 7) from India. From September 1 to 10, I listened to the VOV English program and received moderate reception at UTC 1600-1630, 7220 KHz on my Grundig YB 80 receiver from Murshidabad, West Bengal India. I love the Voice of Vietnam.”
A: Amir Jameel of Pakistan wrote: “Happy 77th National Day of Vietnam, Happy 77th Anniversary of VOV. Congratulations and best wishes. Vietnam is celebrating its 77th National Day on September 2, 2022, commemorating President Ho Chi Minh reading the Declaration of Vietnam Independence at Ba Dình Square in Hanoi in 1945.”
B: He continued: “The Voice of Vietnam started its first broadcast on September 7, 1945. With the passage of time, the Voice of Vietnam has grown tremendously. Now it has seven Radio Channels, two television channels, a newspaper, an online newspaper, and is active on social media. The Voice of Vietnam is one of best and leading radio stations in the world due its informative, cultural, educational and impressive daily programs and its hard working staff. On this happy occasion I’d like to congratulate and pay homage to its veteran staff.”
A: Sanil Deep of India wrote: “Greetings from Calicut. Well once again it is a pleasure to send this email. This is my monthly report of your station which I hope will be very useful for your engineering department. This time the best frequency in India is at 16.00 hours on 7220 khz and 12020 khz is also showing fair to good reception at 13.30 hours.”
B: Thank you, Mr. Deep, for your detailed reception report which is very helpful for us and our technicians. We share with you the spread of COVID-19 once again. In Vietnam, despite expanding vaccination coverage, we’re still reporting around 2,000 to 3,000 cases a day but the mortality rate has fallen sharply and the symptoms of the disease are light. In public places, wearing masks is still recommended as it is one of the key measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
A: Mr. Deep also told us about the Onam festival in his Kerala state which is held on September 8. “Years and years ago, a king named Mahabali ruled in Kerala and he was a kind and generous King and there was no famine in those days. People were living in peace and harmony. We in Kerala believe that the King will visit each houseman in Kerala on the day of Onam. Houses are decorated with flowers starting 10 days before the Onam festival and the 10th day is Onam. Everybody wear new clothes.”
B: Thanks a lot for your story. Mr. Sanil Deep and many other listeners also asked about the reopening of tourism in Vietnam post-COVID.
|Vietjet Air launches its first flights from India's New Delhi and Mumbai to Phu Quoc (Photo: nhandan.vn)
A: Vietnam has welcomed more than 1.4 million international arrivals in the past eight months, a 14-fold rise from a year earlier, thanks to the reopening to foreign tourists and the resumption of international air routes, according to the Vietnam General Statistics Office.
B: Asian visitors made up the majority with nearly a million arrivals, accounting for 69% of the total in the reviewed period. Notably, the number of Korean visitors surged since last year making this Northeast Asian country the biggest source of international arrivals in Vietnam.
A: The GSO noted that in August alone, international arrivals numbered half a million, increasing 38% from July and 52-fold year on year. Vietnam targets 5 million international arrivals this year.
B: Vietnam has won multiple World Travel Awards of the Asia & Oceania region at a gala ceremony held in Ho Chi Minh City recently.
A: UNESCO-recognized World Heritage site Hoi An won in the category for Asia's Leading Cultural City Destination. The capital of Hanoi became Asia’s Leading City Break Destination, while Ho Chi Minh City won Asia’s Leading Business Travel Destinations.
|Ancient town Hoi An from the other side of the Thu Bon river
B: The World Travel Awards also honored Da Nang city as Asia’s Leading Festival & Event Destination, Vietnam Airlines as Asia’s Leading Airline Brand, and several hotels and tourist resorts in Vietnam.
A: The WTA was launched in 1993 to acknowledge excellence in the travel and tourism industry. Heralded as the “travel industry’s equivalent of the Oscars” by the Wall Street Journal, the awards are based on votes from the public and travel professionals across the globe.
B: With all those positive signs, we hope that Vietnam’s tourism will continue to recover strongly and hope to see you, our dear listeners, in Vietnam soon.
A: This week, Najim Uddin of India wrote: “Wishing you a very happy 77th Anniversary, VOV. Over the past 77 years, VOV has been a pioneer in innovation for me. It built the first model of multimedia in Vietnam, comprising of radio, TV, print, and an online newspaper. I would like to thank you so much for covering these wonderful events.”
B: Over the last 2 weeks, VOVWorld received more than 800 emails and letters from listeners around the world.
A: Thank you all very much, particularly Uddin, SB Sharma, Bidhan Chandra Sanyal, and Rabi Sankar Bosu of India, Md Ashik Eqbal of Bangladesh, Kalab Abbas of Pakistan, Johnny Ramirez Lopez of Spain, and many others for your greetings for VOV’s founding anniversary in an email or on our VOV5 English Service Facebook fanpage.
B: This week, Hari Santosa of Indonesia said he wants to learn more about the Phu Quoc prison.
|Escape tunnel in the basement of the Phu Quoc prison.
A: The notorious Phu Quoc prison, a special national relic, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Kien Giang province. The prison is evidence of colonialism, imperialism, and also of the staunch spirit of Vietnamese revolutionary soldiers.
B: It was built by French colonialists to imprison Vietnamese patriots. In 1967, the Saigon regime rebuilt the prison, which went under several names Cay Dua (Coconut Tree) prison, Phu Quoc Jail of Prisoners of War, and Phu Quoc Communist POWs’ Jail.
A: Covering 400 ha, it was the biggest prison in the south and at one point detained up to 40,000 people, including many political prisoners.
|The prison was surrounded by dense barbed wire fences
B: Phu Quoc prison is made up of 12 main sections numbering from 1 to 12. Area numbers 13 and 14 were added in 1972. Each section could accommodate 3,000 prisoners and was surrounded by 10 to 15 layers of barbed wire. In addition to fulltime prison guards, there were often 4 fully equipped battalions guarding the prison.
A: From 1967 to 1973, 4,000 prisoners died and thousands became disabled. Prisoners of war were severely and brutally tortured. They were hung on hot steel scaffoldings and burned, beaten, or shot. They also had to climb up and down thorny trees. Prison guards smashed the finger and toe nails of prisoners and broke their teeth.
|This container was known as savage solitary confinement B2. 10-15 people were packed inside.
B: The infamous site of Phu Quoc prison is the Tiger's cage, which is 1 by 2 meters covered with barbed wire. In the Tiger’s cage, prisoners could not lie down, stand or sit because if they moved they would be scratched and cut open by barbed wire. When it was hot, prison guards placed a furnace next to the container and when it was cold, the guards poured more water into the container. Excavations searching for soldier’s remains found some 10 cm-long nails in leg bones, knee bones, and skulls.
A: Phu Quoc prison receives tens of thousands of visitors every year. Among them, many are former prisoners. It is a place for younger generations to learn more about the sacrifices of their predecessors.
B: And that concludes today’s program. We welcome your feedback at: English Service, VOVWorld, the Voice of Vietnam, 45 Ba Trieu street, Hanoi, Vietnam. Or you can email us at: email@example.com. You’re invited to visit us online at vovworld.vn, where you can hear both live and recorded programs.
A: Check out our VOV Media App, available on both the IOS and Android platforms, to hear our live broadcasts. We look forward to your feedback on the mobile version of vovworld.vn. Once again, thank you all for listening. Goodbye