US Ambassador to Vietnam Daniel Kritenbrink (Photo: VNA)

At a press meeting on July 2nd, he said the normalisation of relations has benefited both sides, noting that his country respects Vietnam and recognises its growing contributions to ties.

During his term, he noted, President Donald Trump has visited Vietnam twice, first on the occasion of the APEC Summit in November 2017 and second the US-DPRK Summit in February 2019.

He also mentioned official visits to Vietnam by Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama, saying they were all memorable.

Bilateral cooperation activities had been carried out long before the two countries set up diplomatic ties, he went on, highlighting the search for remains of US soldiers listed as missing in action during the war since 1988, while cooperation in issues regarding the consequences of war has also had a substantial role in relations.

The diplomat said he looks forward to stronger people-to-people exchanges between the two countries in the following decades, adding that there are about 30,000 Vietnamese students in the US at present, which also means there are 30,000 cultural ambassadors for the two countries.

He said the two countries’ cooperation in the COVID-19 fight has been extraordinary, and Vietnam’s response to the pandemic has been “perhaps the best in the entire world”.

The US has been proud to be Vietnam’s partner in the health sector for more than 20 years. It is pleased to see that cooperation has extended to Vietnam’s extraordinary efforts to control the pandemic, including sharing technical advice and consultation between the US Centres for Disease Control and Vietnam’s Ministry of Health.

USAID has also been assisting Vietnam in coping with COVID-19 and recovering its economy, he noted.

Appreciating the assistance Vietnam has provided to the US, he cited the saying that “a friend in need is a friend indeed”, and that Vietnam is a good friend of his country.

When the US has faced difficulties amid the pandemic, the Vietnamese Government and thousands of Vietnamese friends have donated millions of face masks and other types of protective medical equipment for use in the US, the diplomat said.

He added he is confident that the assistance from Vietnam has saved lives in the US, and his country is very grateful to Vietnam for that./.

CPV/VNA