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Viet Nam commits to effectively safeguard practices related to the Việt beliefs in the Mother Goddesses of Three Realms

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mother goddeses

Nam Dinh, 2 April 2017 – A ceremony to hand over the UNESCO certificate to Viet Nam was organized following Decision 11.COM 10.b.37 by the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage at its 11th Session in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on inscription of the element on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

The ceremony took place in the vicinity of the Phu Giay Temple, Vu Ban District, Nam Province, on 2 April 2017, coinciding with the opening of Phu Giay Festival, one of the major practices related to the Việt beliefs in the Mother Goddesses of Three Realms.

On behalf of UNESCO, Ms. Susan Vize, Head and Representative of UNESCO Ha Noi Office a.i, handed the UNESCO certificate to Mr. Nguyen Ngoc Thien, Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism and Mr. Pham Van Nghi, Chairperson of Nam Dinh Province representing the 21 provinces where the element is practiced.

Addressing the ceremony, Ms. Susan Vize remarked the inscription a major milestone in the journey of this cultural tradition, known to have come into existence in the sixteenth century. She acknowledged the successful efforts by the Vietnamese government, individuals, and particularly the tradition’s bearers and practitioners in revitalizing and strengthening its viability, after decades being restricted, prohibited and intermittently practiced due to misinterpretation.

Affirming that inscription of an element on a UNESCO List does not bring it to the finishing line, but to the start of a new journey, Ms. Vize asserted that the local communities need to be empowered in identifying the relevant values and transmitting knowledge, skills and meanings of their heritage in order to safeguard and allow the element to adapt.

Corresponding to UNESCO’s acknowledgement, Mr. Vu Duc Dam, Deputy Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam, stressed that the Practices related to the Việt beliefs in the Mother Goddesses of Three Realms shall be safeguarded and transmitted in a manner that reflects the inherent cultural identity of the concerned communities, while ensuring that commercial use does not distort the meaning and purpose of the element.

The Deputy Prime Minister thereby requested the close collaboration between the provincial governments, communities and individual tradition bearers and practitioners in effectively executing the 2017- 2022 National Action Plan for the Safeguarding and Promotion of the Practices related to the Việt beliefs in the Mother Goddesses of Three Realms.

For more information on Practices related to the Việt beliefs in the Mother Goddess of Three Realms, or other UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage-related information please visit the following sites:

or contact Mr Nguyen Duc Tang, Culture Programme Officer, at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.




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Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations

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