US Condemns Putin's Visit to Vietnam

Russian leader signed a series of deals
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 20, 2024 5:03 AM CDT
US Condemns Putin's Visit to Vietnam
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Vietnam's President To Lam pose for photos at the Presidential Palace in Hanoi, Vietnam, Thursday, June 20, 2024.   (Nhac Nguyen/Pool Photo via AP)

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a series of deals with his Vietnamese counterpart To Lam on Thursday during a state visit that comes as Moscow is seeking to bolster ties in Asia to offset growing international isolation over its military actions in Ukraine. The two signed agreements to further cooperation on education, science, and technology, oil and gas exploration, and health, the AP reports. They also agreed to work on a roadmap for a nuclear science and technology center in Vietnam.

  • Following the talks, Putin said that the two countries share an interest in "developing a reliable security architecture" in the Asia-Pacific Region based on not using force and peacefully settling disputes with no room for "closed military-political blocs."

  • Putin arrived in Hanoi early Thursday from North Korea, where he and Kim Jong Un signed an agreement that pledges mutual aid in the event of war.
  • Vietnam has remained neutral on Russia's invasion of Ukraine. But neutrality is getting trickier, with the US Embassy in Hanoi criticizing Putin's visit, saying that "no country should give Putin a platform to promote his war of aggression and otherwise allow him to normalize his atrocities." If Putin is allowed to travel freely, it "could normalize Russia's blatant violations of international law," the statement said.
  • Given Putin's international isolation, Vietnam is doing the Russian leader a "huge favor and may expect favors in return," Andrew Goledzinowski, the Australian ambassador to Vietnam, wrote in a post on X. He said that it would have been hard for Vietnam to decline the visit since Putin was already in Asia and Vietnam has historical ties with the former Soviet Republic, but said that it was unlikely that the two would be strategic partners again. "Vietnam will always act in Vietnam's interests and not anyone else's," he wrote.
(More Vladimir Putin stories.)

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