Architects and artists in Vietnam have frowned on the overly bright new paint job on the Saigon Central Post Office, one of Ho Chi Minh City’s most prominent icons and tourist attractions. The new coating is part of a major ongoing facelift at the Saigon Central Post Office, located at No. 2 Cong Xa Paris Street in District 1. The 123-year-old edifice, which is of immense historical and cultural value and is now one of the city’s major tourist attractions, is a stone’s throw from the Saigon Notre-Dame Cathedral, another signature structure in the downtown area. This is the first time the building, which was constructed by a French company in 1891 and is rich in French architecture elements, has undergone a major restoration process in nearly 40 years. The facelift mostly consists of applying a new layer of paint with a brighter shade of yellow and a coating of nanomaterials, as well as making repairs to the roof and walls which have been dripping and … [Read more...] about Experts blast Saigon Central Post Office’s new paint job
What post office is open
Initially, the campaign was launched in some 16,000 post offices in seven pioneering countries: Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, China, Estonia, Mali and Nigeria. The campaign materials provide both visitors and post office employees with important information about how to prevent HIV through a series of eye-catching posters and hand-outs. The materials also give the address of a multi-language website on HIV prevention, hosted by UNAIDS, which provides detailed information about how to prevent infection. "With more than 7,400 new infections occurring every day, it is clear that HIV prevention efforts need to be stepped up urgently," said Michel Sidibé, Executive Director of UNAIDS. "The postal network has an extremely wide outreach; it is open to everyone from the young to the old and is an excellent and innovative way to raise awareness about how to prevent HIV". Over the next three years, the campaign will be expanded globally, potentially making its way into 600,000 post … [Read more...] about Global HIV Prevention Campaign in post offices launched
Venezuela's government is open to improving troubled ties with Washington and is considering a U.S. proposal for the return of anti-drug agents kicked out of the country eight years ago by President Hugo Chavez, a senior official said. Venezuela's Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) greets supporters during a visit to a state-run market held along streets in Valencia, in the state of Carabobo, some 180km (112 miles) west of Caracas January 19, 2013. - Photo: Reuters There has been no word from Chavez since he had cancer surgery in Cuba five weeks ago, so every move the government makes in his absence is being picked over for clues to what the OPEC nation might look like in a post-Chavez era. Speaking to Telesur, a TV network set up by Chavez to counter Western media influence, Venezuela's ambassador to the Organization of American States (OAS), Roy Chaderton, said U.S.-Venezuela relations were "not hot, not cold. Zero degrees". … [Read more...] about Envoy says Venezuela open to better ties with U.S.
Six years ago, President George W. Bush said he gazed into Russian President Vladimir Putin's soul. Now he just wants to see if they can get along. With US-Russia relations at their lowest point in years, stirring memories of the Cold War, Bush hopes to ease tensions when the two leaders hold informal talks on Sunday and Monday at the Bush family estate in Kennebunkport, Maine. But even if Bush and Putin can rekindle the personal chemistry for which they were once dubbed the "George and Vladimir Show," expectations are low for making much progress on the disputes that divide Washington and Moscow. "You'll see lobster rolls and handshakes," said Sarah Mendelson, an analyst at Washington's Center for Strategic and International Studies. "But it won't do a lot to shift what is a generally bleak relationship between the two countries." Strains have grown in recent months amid Russia's bitter opposition to a planned US anti-missile shield in Eastern Europe, disagreement over … [Read more...] about Post-Cold War chill hangs over Bush-Putin summit
Some Vietnamese and foreign experts spell out the opportunities for Vietnam from becoming the newest member of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and how it should tackle challenges it will face. The WTO is expected to vote in favor of Vietnam's entry Tuesday, making it the 150th member of the global trade body. Following are some opinions: Vu Khoan, former deputy prime minister: Joining the WTO is just a means not an end It seems there is a misconception among the public, and even among administrative agencies, that admission to the WTO was a goal. But we should consider joining the global trade body as a means and an opportunity. Becoming a WTO member will offer Vietnam opportunities to attract more investment and expand its export markets. However, it should prepare for a fall in revenues from import tariffs because of its WTO's entry commitments and for increased competition for several domestic industries. Vu Mao, head of the National Assembly's Committee for … [Read more...] about Opportunities, threats for Vietnam post-WTO