IRNA – Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Reza Salehi-Amiri called for further strengthening of cultural relation with Vietnam in a meeting on Sunday with Fam San Chao, special envoy of the Vietnam’s prime minister in the UNESCO.
Salehi-Amiri said that Iranians have a positive mentality about Vietnam for its rich culture.
He added that Iran and Vietnam can have wide-scale regional and international cooperation in the fields of art and culture.
The Iranian minister further noted that President Hassan Rouhani’s visit to Vietnam in 2016 had a clear message for promoting bilateral ties.
Highlighting the role of cultural diplomacy in promoting relations between countries, Salehi-Amiri noted that through cultural diplomacy, nations can get acquainted with each other’s culture and traditions.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) plays an effective role in promoting cultural ties among nations and creates numerous opportunities to this end, he said, adding that UNESCO’s structure is cultural not political and this will greatly help forging cultural interaction among the nations.
Salehi-Amiri, also a member of High Council of the Islamic Revoluton, added that among regional states, Iran is a country that has experienced several civilizations during its history including the Safavid, Sasanid and Achaemenid dynasties and it is an undeniable fact that Iran is the focal poiunt of different civilizations.
“Iran is the only country in the region which accepted Islam but its language did not change into Arabic,” said the minister, arguing that the Iranian language and its culture are so rich and intertwined with the nation’s identity.
Meanwhile, the Vietnamese special envoy, hailed Iran’s culture and civilization, saying that many of his countrymen are familiar with the ‘One Thousand and One Night’ stories.
The ‘One Thousand and One Night’ is a collection of Middle Eastern and South Asian stories and folk tales compiled in Arabic during the Islamic Golden Age. It is believed that many tales of the book are most probably drawn from the Pahlavi Persian work Hazār Afsān (A Thousand Tales) which in turn relied partly on Indian elements.
He further noted that the two countries can joint cooperation in the fields of cinema, architecture and exchanging museum items.
Vietnam was successful in cultural diplomacy and uses it as principle in its foreign policy, he said.
Vietnam has representative offices in 100 countries and shares its culture and civilization with other countries through these missions, he said.