Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum suspends visits as Covid-19 spirals

By Hoang Thuy   March 23, 2020 | 01:37 am PT
Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum suspends visits as Covid-19 spirals
The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum in Hanoi's Ba Dinh District. Photo by Shutterstock/Jimmy Tran.
Hanoi’s historic Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum in Ba Dinh Square closed its doors to tourists from Monday amid the threatening pandemic.

The move followed the surge in Hanoi's number of new coronavirus infections which had hit 39 by Monday afternoon.

The closure will last until the pandemic is contained in Vietnam, the management board of the mausoleum announced Sunday.

Situated at No.2 Hung Vuong Street in Ba Dinh Street, the facility is normally open to the public from 7.30 a.m. to 10.30 a.m., except on Mondays and Fridays.

In addition, all visits to the nearby monument dedicated to martyrs are suspended until further notice.

President Ho Chi Minh passed away on September 3, 1969. In the following days, his body was embalmed by Soviet Union experts and a special Vietnamese medical team under a joint agreement between the two governments.

His body is placed in a glass coffin at the mausoleum named after him in Hanoi.

Opened in 1973, the granite memorial was inspired by Lenin's mausoleum in Moscow and built on the spot where Ho Chi Minh read the Declaration of Independence on September 2, 1945, establishing the Democratic Republic of Vietnam.

The embalmed body of Uncle Ho is preserved in the central hall inside the building, and protected by a military honor guard.

Millions of people visit the memorial each year, making it one of Hanoi's most popular attractions. 

Earlier, Hanoi and many other localities around the country closed all historical sites and tourist attractions as well as shut down all bars, karaoke parlors and entertainment facilities to prevent the spread of the epidemic.

Vietnam has recorded 104 new infections since March 6, 103 still under treatment and one recovered last week. Of the active cases, 12 have tested negative either once or twice.

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