Women should play greater role in politics: VP

Vice President Nguyen Thi Doan has called on the French-speaking community to pay more attention to promoting the role women and youth in politics, economic development and social affairs.

The 15th Summit of the International Organisation of La Francophonie (IOF) that opened in Dakar, Senegal on Saturday. — VNA/VNS Photo Thong Nhat

Addressing the 15th Summit of the International Organisation of La Francophonie (IOF) that opened in Dakar, Senegal on Saturday, Doan shared Viet Nam's experiences in strengthening gender equality.

She also highlighted the great contributions made by Vietnamese women and youth to the country's independence struggles as well as the current nation-building efforts.

Praising IOF's increased attention to strengthening relations with Asia-Pacific countries, she said Viet Nam would do its utmost to facilitate such efforts.

She also stressed Viet Nam's external affairs policy of independence and self-reliance for peace, co-operation and development, as also international integration.

Viet Nam attached much importance to multilateral foreign activities, including its role as an active member of the UN Human Rights Council and its participation for the first time in UN peacekeeping operations, she said.

Vice President Doan, the only representative of the Asia-Pacific region at the event, also expressed concern over the increasingly complicated political and security situation in the world, with more conflict hotspots and serious global challenges like terrorism, climate change, poverty and pandemics.

She said the IOF should enhance solidarity and bolster joint efforts in tackling these common issues.

She stressed that all disputes could and must be solved through peaceful measures on the basis of dialogue and co-operation.

The Vietnamese leader also called on the IOF to continue supporting the stance taken by ASEAN and Viet Nam on dealing peacefully with conflicts, including the East Sea dispute, on the basis of international law and the United Nations Charter.

The 15th IOF Summit, which gathered 28 presidents, prime ministers and senior leaders of 77 IOF member governments and states, as well as representatives from regional and international organisations including the UN and the African Union, focused on "Women and Children in the Francophonie: Peacemakers and Key Players for Development."

The meeting heard a report on the organisation's operation by outgoing IOF Secretary-General Abdou Diof, former President of Senegal. The report assessed implementation of action plans formulated during the previous summit in Kinshasa, Congo in 2012.

Currently, the IOF has 57 member countries and territories, and 20 observer members.

The IOF Summit is held every two years, with the first one taking place in 1986 in France. Viet Nam hosted the 7th IOF summit in 1997.

Meeting leaders

On Friday, Vice President Doan held meetings with leaders of Francophone countries in Daka, aiming to enhance all-round co-operation.

During talks with Mauritian President Rajkesmur Purryag, Doan said Viet Nam treasured traditional relations with African friends, including Mauritius.

She said the two countries should work on negotiations for trade and investment agreements to accelerate bilateral co-operation.

Purryag said he hoped Viet Nam would support his country's bid to become Secretary General of the Francophone Organisation.

At a meeting with caretaker Prime Minister of Tunisia Medhi Jomaa, the Vietnamese official underscored the need to strengthen business exchanges and promote trade and investment activities, while asking Tunisia to recognise Viet Nam as a market economy and speed up the organisation of the third session of the Viet Nam-Tunisia Joint Committee in 2015.

The PM said Viet Nam was an important partner of Tunisia, and vowed to promote co-operation between the two countries.

At a reception for the Haitian Foreign Minister Duly Brutus, Doan highlighted the development of relations between the two countries.

She said she was delighted at the initial co-operation results of Vietnamese businesses such as Viettel and Vinafood.

She conveyed an invitation from President Truong Tan Sang to the Haitian president to visit Viet Nam.

FM Duly Brutus pledged to facilitate Vietnamese businesses' operations.

During the meetings, she also asked the countries to support Viet Nam's candidacy for the UNESCO Executive Council for the 2016-18 term, the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) for the 2016-18 term and the UN Security Council for the 2020-21 term.


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