Many areas of land in the central province of Ha Tinh, once hit hard with hundreds of tonnes of bombs and mines during the American war, are being revived as a result of a 2010-2025 national action programme on overcoming the consequences of post-war unexploded ordnance (UXO).

According a survey carried out from 2004-2008, 234,000 hectares of land are contaminated with UXO, accounting for 38.8 percent of the province’s total area. It ranks third, after two other central provinces of Quang Tri (83.8 percent) and Quang Ngai (57 percent).

Thanks to efforts by the local authorities, armed forces and people and funds from the Vietnamese Government, foreign countries and non-governmental organisations, thousands of hectares have been cleared of UXO and put back into use, contributing to the locality’s socio-economic development.

Another project to this end has been also underway in Quang Ngai province since 2010.

The provincial Military Command has to date performed bomb and mine clearance over 3,600 hectares of land, discovering and deactivating more than 26,000 explosive materials.

According to the command, 232,000 hectares in all communes in the province are polluted with UXO. From 1975-2006, 1,418 people were killed and 1,580 injured across the province by the deadly legacy of the war.

According to the National Steering Committee for Recovery over the Postwar Bomb and Landmine Impact, about 800,000 tonnes of UXO, scattered across 6.6 million hectares or 20.12 percent of the country’s land, are putting people in danger every day.

Latest statistics show that ordnance left behind by the war has killed more than 42,000 people and injured 60,000 others nationwide.

An International Mine Action Day will be held on April 4, with related events held across the globe, including in Vietnam.-VNA