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Last Updated: Friday, 24 November 2006, 11:21 GMT
In pictures: Vietnam's old and new

Two young Vietnamese ride past a sign for the Apec conference

This month's Asia-Pacific summit in Vietnam's capital Hanoi has focused attention on the country's rapid changes.

Cartier shop in Hanoi

As economic growth continues, the country's newly affluent citizens are finding they no longer have to travel to Shanghai or Bangkok to buy the luxury items they desire.

Woman wearing a traditional conical hat walking down a sidewalk

But amidst all this new-found prosperity, Vietnamese traditions are still very much in evidence.

Hanoi¿s old quarter

Some parts of Hanoi retain the traditional hallmarks of the French colonial era.

Construction project in central Hanoi

But others are being rebuilt to house the new multi-storey office blocks and residential units required by the rapidly expanding urban population.

The wall of Hao Lo prison, where US Senator John McCain was imprisoned during the war, with the five-star Hanoi Towers in the background.

Wartime sites, such as Hao Lao jail - where US Senator John McCain was imprisoned - have been torn down. Only the wall of the building remains, behind a new five star hotel.

Ho Chi Minh's mausoleum in Hanoi

Some sites, though, remain the same. Wartime leader Ho Chi Minh is still revered throughout Vietnam, and his mausoleum remains one of the city's focal points.

Soldier in central Hanoi

While the Communist government is showing signs of opening up, it still stifles dissent and regulates press freedom.

Propaganda poster showing Ho Chi Minh with a small child in central Hanoi

Propaganda posters adorn the side of buildings, as the city's never-ending stream of motorbikes hurtle past.




SEE ALSO
Dissidents silenced at Apec forum
16 Nov 06 |  Asia-Pacific
Summit fear for Vietnam homeless
12 Nov 06 |  Asia-Pacific
World trade body admits Vietnam
07 Nov 06 |  Business
Country profile: Vietnam
03 Jan 06 |  Country profiles

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