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Vietnam Embassy in Ukraine has functioned as normal: envoy

By Thanh Danh   February 15, 2022 | 06:30 am PT
Vietnam Embassy in Ukraine has functioned as normal: envoy
Travelers wait at the check-in counters ahead of their flights at the Boryspil airport some 30 kilometers outside Kyiv on February 13, 2022. Photo by AFP/Sergei Supinsky
The Vietnam Embassy in Ukraine has been functioning as normal and there's no need to evacuate or repatriate its citizens yet, says the Vietnamese ambassador.

Tensions in Ukraine have been alleviated by diplomatic efforts that have helped reduce the risk of armed conflict, Ambassador Nguyen Hong Thach told VnExpress.

He mentioned Monday's message from Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, which highlighted that the country was facing a complex information war.

"We are being intimidated by the great war and the date of the military invasion is being set again. This is not the first time," said the president. "The war against us is being systematically waged on all fronts [...] On the information one, they seek to spread panic among citizens and investors through the media."

This message, said ambassador Thanh, "shows that Ukraine leaders do not look at the military conflict as their biggest threat for now."

With such an assessment, the Vietnamese Embassy in Ukraine has continued to function as normal, he said. The embassy is running an exhibition displaying paintings on Vietnam drawn by Ukraine artists from Feb. 10 to 27.

"Without confidence in the assessment of the situation and the possibility of peace, we would not have been able to hold such an event," he said.

The embassy has still prepared for different scenarios to evacuate Vietnamese citizens out of conflict zones should war break out; or repatriate them when otherwise needed. However, the scenario of a sudden increase in the demand for repatriation among Vietnamese people in Ukraine is very unlikely, he said.

"The situation in Ukraine is entering a new phase, diplomats have met and held discussions to find solutions."

"We can clearly see compromises taking shape and the risk of war becoming less and less," he said.

Thach said "tension has eased significantly" compared to two weeks ago, when Western countries over the weekend had withdrawn their diplomats or advised their citizens to leave Ukraine.

Some troops in Russia's military districts adjacent to Ukraine have returned to their bases after completing drills on Tuesday, Russia's defense ministry said.

Although Moscow has denied ever planning to attack Ukraine, it has demanded legally binding guarantees from the U.S. and NATO that Kyiv will not be allowed to join the military bloc. Washington and Brussels have so far refused to make such pledges, Reuters reported.

Russia has amassed over 100,000 troops near Ukraine's borders, prompting fears of an invasion, especially as Moscow's Feb. 10-20 joint drills with Belarus mean that Ukraine is almost encircled by the Russian military.

Russian markets, under pressure due to fears of fresh Western sanctions in the event of a war, gained 1.5 percent shortly after the defense ministry announcement, the Reuters report said.

 
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