A concert of music and dance was held in Hanoi on April 2 to appeal for more effort to overcome the consequences of unexploded ordnance left over from the last war.

When he gave his opening address, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Thien Nhan stated that the Vietnamese government has prioritised clearing the country of these sometimes fatal munitions, adding that the country has drawn up policies and spent hundreds of billion of VND dealing with the issue.

Thanks to a joint effort from the public and the support of the international community, Vietnam’s actions to find and clear bombs and mines left over from the war have proved extremely effective, said the deputy PM.

The Vietnamese government will mobilise every resource it can and is looking for more international support to help clear the country of this deadly legacy, he added.

During the evening, which was to mark International Day for Mine Clearance and Assistance in Mine Action (April 4), the audience listened to first hand accounts from war veterans and bomb victims.

While talking about the engineers’ efforts to clear the affected areas, Major General Pham Quang Xuan, Commander of the Engineering Corps, said that national programme 504, which is designed to deal with unexploded ordnance (UXO) is trying to mobilise resources from both domestic and overseas sources to minimise the consequences so socio-economic development can move forwards.

Japanese-Vietnamese Nguyen Dich Hoan, a representative of the overseas Vietnamese community, said he was touched when he saw the destruction and despair caused by UXO and called on people around the world and international humanitarian organisations to help bomb and mine victims in Vietnam .

According to Chairman of the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations (VUFO) Vu Xuan Hong, over the past few years, international non-governmental organisations have helped to build a data system of unexploded explosive ordnance in Vietnam and have disseminated the danger of bombs and mines to local communities.

They have also funded bomb and mine clearance operations in Vietnam and have helped victims to rebuild their lives.

The VUFO will work with other agencies to draw up a national programme to call on international non-governmental organisations to donate more in the future to submit to the Prime Minister for approval.-VNA