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July 25, 2013

Mr. Trương Tấn Sang vs. Mr. Obama

Yêu Tiếng Anh - President Truong Tan Sang has just paid a three-day visit to the U.S, July 24-26, 2013. This is his first bilateral meeting with the counterpart, president Barack Obama, also has been the second talk between 2 presidents of two countries so far since both approached normalization of US-Viet Nam relations on July 12, 1995.


It is my pleasure to welcome President Truong Tan Sang to the White House and to the Oval Office for his first bilateral meeting with me.  This represents the steady progression and strengthening of the relationship between our two countries. 
Obviously, we all recognize the extraordinarily complex history between the United States and Vietnam.  Step by step, what we have been able to establish is a degree of mutual respect and trust that has allowed us now to announce a comprehensive partnership between our two countries that will allow even greater cooperation on a whole range of issues from trade and commerce to military-to-military cooperation, to multilateral work on issues like disaster relief, to scientific and educational exchanges.
What we've also discussed is the ways in which through the Trans-Pacific Partnership -- or TPP -- both the United States and Vietnam are participating in what will be an extraordinarily ambitious effort to increase trade, commerce and transparency in terms of commercial relationships throughout the Asia Pacific region.  And we're committed to the ambitious goal of completing this agreement before the end of the year because we know that this can create jobs and increase investment across the region and in both our countries. 


We discussed the need for continued efforts to resolve peacefully maritime issues that have surfaced in the South China Sea and other parts of the Asia Pacific region.  And we very much appreciate Vietnam’s commitment to working with ASEAN and the East Asia Summit in order for us to arrive at Codes of Conduct that will help to resolve these issues peacefully and fairly.
We discussed the challenges that all of us face when it comes to issues of human rights, and we emphasized how the United States continues to believe that all of us have to respect issues like freedom of expression, freedom of religion, freedom of assembly.  And we had a very candid conversation about both the progress that Vietnam is making and the challenges that remain.
We both reaffirmed the efforts that have been made to deal with war legacy issues.  We very much appreciate Vietnam's continued cooperation as we try to recover our Missing in Action and those that were lost during the course of the war.  And I reaffirmed the United States' commitment to work with Vietnam around some of the environmental and health issues that have continued, decades later, because of the war.
Finally, we agreed that one of the great sources of strength between our two countries is the Vietnamese American population that is here but obviously has continued strong ties to Vietnam. And ultimately, it's those people-to-people relations that are the glue that can strengthen the relationship between any two countries. 
So I just want to say to President Sang how much I appreciate his visit.  I think it signifies the maturing and the next stage of the development between the United States and Vietnam.  As we increase consultation, increase cooperation, increase trade, and scientific and education exchanges, ultimately, that’s going to be good for the prosperity and opportunities of the people here in the United States, as well as good for the opportunities and prosperity of the people of Vietnam. 
At the conclusion of the meeting, President Sang shared with me a copy of a letter sent by Ho Chi Minh to Harry Truman.  And we discussed the fact that Ho Chi Minh was actually inspired by the U.S. Declaration of Independence and Constitution, and the words of Thomas Jefferson.  Ho Chi Minh talks about his interest in cooperation with the United States.  And President Sang indicated that even if it's 67 years later, it's good that we're still making progress. 
Thank you very much for your visit.  And I look forward to continued work together. 
 Best luck!
Quốc Bảo - Yêu Tiếng Anh 

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