President Nguyen Van Thieu was sworn in yesterday (Sunday) for his second four-year term as South Vietnam's head of state.
President Nguyen Van Thieu was sworn in yesterday (Sunday) for his second four-year term as South Vietnam's head of state. The 48-year-old leader, who was elected unopposed on October 3.
The ceremony, attended by thousands of invited guests and guarded by 42,000 police and troops, went off without any disturbances. The general public was banned from the ceremony for security reasons.
About 30 foreign representatives, including United States Treasury Secretary John Connally, saw the President walk to a dais to light a giant torch.
In his speech, he warned against "political dissensions" and demanded total adherence to the law.
SYNOPSIS: At a solemn ceremony in the heart of Saigon, President Nguyen Van Thieu was sworn in on Sunday at the start of his second four-year term of office as South Vietnam's head of state.
The thousands who attended the inauguration ceremony did so by special invitation and were carefully vetted. Members of the general public were kept away for security reasons and 42,000 police and troops guarded the area as the 48-year-old leader stepped forward to take his oath. President Thieu began the brief but colourful ceremony by stepping on to a raised dais where a giant torch was waiting to be lit. The President's main rival, former Vice-President Ky, who withdrew from the Presidential election after charging that it had been rigged, did not attend the ceremony. He had announced the previous day that he intended to return to military life.
About 30 foreign representatives, including Mr John Connally, United States Secretary of the Treasury witnessed the ceremony and heard the hymns sung by a choir of uniformed militia.
President Thieu invited North Vietnam to take practical steps towards peace. He also gave a severe warning against political dissensions in South Vietnam and demanded total adherence to the law.