Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum
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The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum (Vietnamese: Lăng Chủ tịch Hồ Chí Minh) is the final resting place of Vietnamese Revolutionary leader Ho Chi Minh in Hanoi, Vietnam. It is a large building located in the center of Ba Dinh Square, where Ho, President of the Communist Party of Vietnam from 1951 until his death in 1969, read the Declaration of Independence on 2 September 1945, establishing the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. It is also known as Ba Đình Mausoleum (Vietnamese: Lăng Ba Đình) and is open to the public.
Construction work began on September 2, 1973, and the mausoleum was formally inaugurated on August 29, 1975. It was inspired by Lenin's Mausoleum in Moscow but incorporates distinct Vietnamese architectural elements, such as the sloping roof. The exterior is made of grey granite, while the interior is grey, black and red polished stone. The mausoleum's portico has the words "Chủ tịch Hồ Chí Minh" (Chairman Ho Chi Minh) inscribed across it. The banner beside says "Nước Cộng Hòa Xã Hội Chủ Nghĩa Việt Nam Muôn Năm" (en: "Long live The Socialist Republic of Viet Nam").
The structure is 21.6 meters (70.9 feet) high and 41.2 meters (135.2 feet) wide. Flanking the mausoleum are two platforms with seven steps for parade viewing. The plaza in front of the mausoleum is divided into 240 green squares separated by pathways. The gardens surrounding the mausoleum have nearly 250 different species of plants and flowers, all from different regions of Vietnam.
The embalmed body of Ho Chi Minh is preserved in the cooled, central hall of the mausoleum, which is protected by a military honour guard. The body lies in a glass case with dim lights. The mausoleum is closed occasionally while work is done to restore and preserve the body but is normally open to the public every morning. Lines of visitors, including visiting foreign dignitaries, pay their respects at the mausoleum every day. Rules regarding dress and behavior are strictly enforced by staff and guards. Legs must be covered (no shorts or miniskirts). Visitors must be silent and walk in two lines. Hands must not be in pockets, nor arms crossed. Smoking, drinking, eating, photography and video taping are also not permitted anywhere inside the mausoleum.
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