1 May 2010

Fall of Saigon re-enacted

6:03 am on 1 May 2010

Vietnam has marked 35 years since the end of the war by staging a re-enactment of the fall of the Saigon.

Thousands of troops marched through the streets of what is now officially called Ho Chi Minh City to mark the day in 1975 when the communist North claimed victory.

The Vietnam War claimed the lives of three million Vietnamese and 60,000 US soldiers.

The BBC reports thousands of people gathered in front of the former presidential residence, now called Independence Palace, in Ho Chi Minh City, to watch a military and cultural display.

President Nguyen Minh Triet used the event to praise the country's economic development.

Vietnam remains under communist rule and the government keeps tight control over politics and the media.

But its economy has improved dramatically since the war, and diplomatic relations have resumed with the United States.