Paris street named after member of France - Vietnam Friendship Association
Henri Martin, a French communist soldier, who wholeheartedly supported Vietnam. (Image: Humanite.fr)
The street naming ceremony took place on November 7 with the participation of Pantin Mayor Bertrand Kern; General Secretary of the French Communist Party Fabien Roussel; Vietnamese Ambassador to France Nguyen Thiep; relatives of Mr. Henri Martin, Ms. Raymonde Dien and French friends who participated in the struggle for peace, independence and reunification of Vietnam.
Henri Martin (1927 - 2015) is a French citizen who bravely protested wars of aggression against Vietnam, his famous quote "My whole life was devoted to Vietnam". He was also one of the first members of the Franco-Vietnamese Friendship Association.
In 1946, when Henri Martin arrived in Vietnam as a sailor to disarm the Japanese army, he witnessed firsthand the devastation that Hai Phong port city suffered. He quickly realized the meaningless nature of the war that France was waging in Indochina. The young sailor immediately applied for demobilization but was refused. Later, when he returned to the port of Toulon, he contacted the French Communist Party in Var province, spearing leaflets calling for sailors to fight the war. In March 1950 he was arrested and sentenced to 5 years in prison.
Henri Martin street in Pantin city. Contents: Pantin communist soldier, once imprisoned for his participation in fighting the Indochina war. Photo: screenshot Nhan Dan TV
Due to pressure from public opinion and progressive forces, less than 5 months later Henri Martin was released. He again actively participated in activities of the French Communist Party, such as protesting colonial wars in Indochina, Algeria, and later against American aggression wars in Vietnam.
In particular, during the Paris Conference, Henri Martin worked closely to support and assist the Delegation of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam and the Delegation of the Provisional Revolutionary Government of the Republic of Vietnam. In peacetime, he always followed Vietnam's development, giving priority to humanitarian activities such as supporting Agent Orange victims and building Friendship Village in Hoai Duc District, Hanoi. In 2003, Henri Martin was awarded the Friendship Medal on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the signing of the Paris Agreement
Vietnamese Ambassador to France Nguyen Thiep said, the generations of Vietnamese people have been and will forever engrave the affection and sacrifice of the French friends, the soldiers who wholeheartedly fought for peace for Vietnam.
As for the mayor of Pantin city Bertrand Kern, naming the street after Henri Martin not only to recognize his contribution to peace but also to strengthen the friendship between the two younger generation of the two countries and promote cooperation projects between France and Vietnam.