On August 20th, 2021, at the invitation of the DAV Acting President - Dr. Pham Lan Dung, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation - Gennady Bezdetko paid a courtesy visit on the occasion of beginning the ambassador term to Hanoi, Vietnam.
Accompanying the Ambassador Bezdetko was Ms. Anna Vetoshkina, Second Secretary and Ms. Anna Gvozdeva, Attaché of the Embassy of Russia. Also present at the meeting were DAV Acting President, Dr. Pham Lam Dung, Mr. Do Son Hai, Deputy Director of the Foreign Service Training Center (FOSET), Mr. Nguyen Anh Tuan, Deputy Director of the Institute for Strategic Studies (ISS), Ms. Nguyen Thi Bich Ngoc, Trainee Deputy Director of the ISS, Ms. Nguyen Hai Yen, Head of International Relations Department and Ms. Le Phuong Thao, ISS specialist.
During the meeting, the DAV Acting President welcomed Ambassador Gennady Bezdetko to begin his working term to Vietnam and wished to further strengthen the relationship between the Embassy and the DAV particularly as well as the Vietnam - Russia Federation relation generally. Dr. Dung affirmed Russia's role and position in the international arena, emphasized the importance of relations between Vietnam and Russia, especially in education sectors as well as promoting cooperation of mutual interest such as, (i) Cooperating with the Moscow National Institute of International Relations on training, specifically organizing training courses and online seminars, jointly compiling references and journals; (ii) Promoting cooperation and exchange students with the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO) to study at the DAV; (iii) Proposing to teach Russian as a second foreign language for the DAV students upon the DAV’s request; (iv) Boosting strong cooperation with the Moscow National Institute of International Relations in multilateral frameworks such as, ASEAN ISIS, CSCAP, especially within NARTT (Network of ASEAN - Russia Think Tanks).
In particular, with the purpose of promoting close people-to-people diplomatic relations between the two countries, the DAV Acting President invited the Russian Embassy to participate in the design, interior decoration, and facility contributions for the new building of the DAV, which aims to create a space for cultural and historical imprints of Russia, raise awareness and gain the affection of DAV students towards the country and Russian people. Another significant content mentioned at the meeting was vaccine diplomacy, in which the Acting President emphasized Russia's Sputnik V vaccine with the letter V meaning Victory was one of the most effective vaccines with good results in the fight against COVID-19. Simultaneously, she expressed her hope that the Ambassador would figure out how to connect and support Vietnam in prioritizing access to Russia's Sputnik V vaccine as soon as possible, especially in the complicated progress of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In terms of the Russian side, Ambassador Bezdetko affirmed that Russia's foreign policy attached great importance to the relationship with Vietnam and hoped to maintain as well as further develop it. The Ambassador emphasized his desire to strengthen the close cooperation relationship between the Russian Embassy to Vietnam and the DAV in the future. The Ambassador also said that the Russian Embassy will make efforts to resume visits and exchange delegations between the two sides in the upcoming time to enhance mutual understanding and restore the momentum of relationship interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
With regards to training cooperation, Ambassador Bezdetko especially emphasized the importance of the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam in training high-quality human resources for Vietnam. Therefore, the Ambassador expressed his wishes that the two sides can continually enhance and deepen the Vietnam-Russia relations in education sector in the future by strengthening dialogues between the two sides as well as other meetings with specific initiatives and programs between the diplomatic academies of the two countries. In addition, the Ambassador welcomed the DAV initiative and agreed on giving priority to a Russian room in the new building of the academy as a symbol of solidarity and friendship between the two countries, further strengthening the relation between the Russian Embassy to Vietnam and the DAV. Particularly, in response to the request of the DAV to prioritize Vietnam in accessing to Russia's Sputnik V vaccine as soon as possible, Ambassador Bezdetko basically agreed and committed to continually prioritize the allocation of the next batch of Russian-made Sputnik V vaccines to Vietnam in general, as well as to diplomatic staff and their relatives working on the front lines in particular. In regard to domestic vaccines, the Ambassador supposed the VABIOTECH company had successfully bottled the first batch of COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V. The samples from this batch of vaccines are being shipped to the Gamaleya Institute for quality control. Having this stage completed, it is expected to produce 100 million doses per month. In addition, the Ambassador also claimed Russia has been conducting research and testing a vaccine for children from 12-18 years old, which vaccine is predicted to use by the aerosol method with a single dose. When the test is completed, Russia is expected to sell this vaccine to Vietnam.
At the end of the visit, the two sides agreed on working together in order to further promote relations between the two countries in general and between the Russian Embassy and the DAV in particular. Dr. Pham Lan Dung invited Russian Ambassador Bezdetko to revisit the Academy as well as to make speeches in joint programs and events in the future.