Politburo member and President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan on July 9 visited three soldiers injured in a military helicopter crash in Hanoi two days ago.

The number of fatalities in the accident has increased to 18 after two of the injured passed away due to serious injuries, reported the Military Medical Institute 103’s Le Huu Trac National Institute of Burns in the capital.

The VFF leader said the death of the military men is a huge loss of their families, the army and the country.

Earlier the same day, Defence Minister Gen. Phung Quang Thanh and head of the Party Central Committee’s Commission for Mass Mobilisation Ha Thi Khiet also visited and presented gifts to the injured soldiers and their families.

A memorial service for the fallen soldiers will be held at the Military Hospital 108 on July 11.

The Russian-made MI-171 helicopter with 21 military personnel on board lost contact and came down in Hoa Lac village, Binh Yen commune, Hanoi’s outskirt Thach That district at 7:46 am on July 7, only 16 minutes after it took off from Hoa Lac Airport in the west of Hanoi for a parachute training exercise.-VNA