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Feb 28, 2023 / 18:14

Vietnam eyes to clean up 350,000 hectares of UXO

Since 1975, some 100,000 Vietnamese people have died and injured by war leftovers.

Vietnam hopes to remove unexploded ordnance on 350,000 hectares in 2023-2028, said Deputy Defense Minister Lt. Gen. Hoang Xuan Chien.

A bomb gets defused in Quang Tri Province's Huong Hoa District. Photo: The Hanoi Times

In the past 10 years, Vietnam has demined at some 500,000 hectares, the Vietnamese military official told the US Ambassador to Vietnam Marc Evans Knapper at a meeting on February 27.

Vietnam expects the US to finance Vietnamese and international partners to help resolve war legacies.

Chien added that he hopes the US and Vietnamese governments will consider removing war remnants not only in the central coastal region but also in other parts of the country, thus boosting the country's socio-economic development.

The Vietnamese defense deputy minister said that he expects the US to keep implementing the Vietnam-US Memorandum of Understandings (MoU) signed in 2013 to address the aftermath of bombs and mines.

He urged the US to soon finish the construction of the training center that meets the International Mine Action Standards (IMAS) and provide further support in this regard.

Hoang Xuan Chien stressed that Vietnam would continue facilitating American partners to carry out mine clearance.

The US Ambassador to Vietnam, Marc Evans Knapper, said that the US Government had made utmost efforts to support Vietnam in this drive through international organizations since the ratification of the MoU in 2013.

Key support activities include technical consultancy for Vietnam's national strategic plan, development of the national bomb and mine database center, training of Vietnamese technicians in bomb and mine clearance, and construction of the demining training center in Ba Vi District in Hanoi.

He also recognized the results Vietnam had obtained in dealing with war legacies.

The US is one of the first countries to provide demining support to Vietnam since 2013, especially regarding updated management approaches and technologies.

According to the Vietnam National Mine Action Center, some 40,000 Vietnamese people have died and 60,000 are injured in UXO-related cases since 1975. Vietnam now needs to clear 5.6 million hectares of UXO-contaminated land, equal to 17.1% of the country's total area.