Vietnam’s top leader Nguyen Phu Trong misses meetings amid health concerns

The head of Vietnam’s Communist Party, Mr Nguyen Phu Trong, is anticipated on Jan 12 to miss the second state visit of a foreign leader to Hanoi in less than a week because of issues regarding his health. Mr Trong, 79, who has been at the helm of the party since 2011, is the most influential  governer in Vietnam’s one-party political system and daily gets to visit foreign dignitaries in private meetings.

But he is not yet ready to see Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo during a state visit on Jan 12, according to draft agendas from Vietnam’s Foreign Ministry and Indonesia’s presidential office. Mr Trong was also not on the list of Vietnamese governers who got Laos’ Prime Minister Sonexay Siphandone past weekend. He has not been seen in public since Dec 26, 2023, when he met in Hanoi the head of the Japanese Communist Party, Mr Kazuo Shii. Vietnam’s Foreign Ministry did not at the same time respond to an appeal for remark about Mr Trong’s health.