Mr Ho Quang Loi, Head of the Department for Propaganda and Training at the Hanoi Party Committee and member of the National Steering Committee for the 1,000th anniversary of Thang Long - Hanoi, spoke about the celebrations.
What message does Hanoi want to send to local people and international friends regarding the anniversary?
The biggest message Hanoi wishes to send is that it is a thousand-year-old city with noble and special values including culture, heroism, peace and friendship. This is an important event in the history of Vietnam, so it is not only for Hanoians but also for the whole country. When Hanoi was honoured as a city of peace, the celebrations of its 1000th anniversary also become a festival for international friends. We will welcome about 1,000 international groups, including delegations from cities, friendship capitals, and cultural - arts groups, who will perform at the events.
For people throughout the country, the anniversary is a historic opportunity to express their infinite gratitude to their ancestors, who sacrificed their lives to build such a great country. At the same time, it is also an opportunity to educate the next generation to inherit the glorious traditions of the nation.
With such inspiration and deep emotion in the heart of each citizen in Vietnam, the country will have a new spirit and motivation. Since the landmark of 1,000 years is a historic launching pad, we can build the capital and the country in a new period of development. Every person can contribute to the country through his or her specific activities. Aware that we are Vietnamese people and have such a nation and capital with noble values, each person should adjust their attitudes and behaviour to improve their life and deserve to be citizens.
How is the message being expressed through activities and programs held for the anniversary?
Hanoi has prepared for this great anniversary with three main actions. Firstly, we completed 33 major construction projects on a national scale for the anniversary. For example, we will open two bridges across the Red River - Thanh Tri and Vinh Tuy - and begin construction of the Nhat Tan Bridge. We will also open the longest and most modern boulevard in the country, Thang Long Boulevard (formerly the Lang - Hoa Lac Highway), the Peace Park, statues of President Ho Chi Minh, President Ton Duc Thang, and national hero Thanh Giong, the Hanoi Museum, and others. Hanoi will also launch a book set about Thang Long - Hanoi entitled “Thang Long with 1,000 Years of Civilisation”, including 100 books drawn from the essences of our ancestors over 1,000 years. The book set was compiled by prestigious culturists, scientists, and historians, with Dr Vu Khiem being the chief editor.
The second activity is urban improvements around the city, to make it cleaner, greener and more beautiful to welcome in the anniversary.
And the third is arranging activities and festivals for ten days, from October 1 to 10. The highlights will be the opening ceremony on the morning of the first day and the closing ceremony on the evening of the last day, to be attended by 10,000 people. On the other days, Hanoi’s cultural quintessence will be introduced via photographic and art exhibitions, international seminars, and a film festival. Other special activities include concerts by international and national symphony orchestras, performances of newly-written songs about Thang Long - Hanoi, and a street carnival and music and arts shows. The celebrations will bring together many politicians, cultural activists and scientists not only from Hanoi but also from other cities and provinces in Vietnam and from other countries around the world.
How do you view the contributions of individuals and organisations preparing for the anniversary celebrations?
I’m very excited with what they have done and contributed to the capital. The anniversary is an opportunity for each individual, group and organisation to express their emotion for their ancestors and their love of Hanoi. Throughout the country, during the days of celebration, people will passionately and enthusiastically take part in the different activities. Many individuals and groups will present gifts to Hanoi. The capital has received thousands of items with deep spiritual value.
What do you think will remain in the minds of people after the celebrations end?
The anniversary is not merely about how we view the past but is also a story of the future. When the celebrations end people will welcome in the second millennium with a new mindset. Therefore, what we’re doing today will echo into the future. Things will change in a positive way.
A focus on what it does for the future makes the celebrations truly meaningful. We not only organise the celebrations for immediate pleasure but also create a driver for Hanoi and Vietnam to move further. The anniversary is launching pad for us to continue to develop the capital rapidly and sustainably.