Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam has just approved a proposal to convert the French-built Son La Prison in the northern province of Son La into a national special relic site.

He has asked the authorities in Son La to draft a master plan to renovate the site and submit it to the Prime Minister.

The prison was built by French colonialists in 1908 covering an area of 500 sq.m. It was expanded in 1940 to 1,700 sq.m. Between 1930 and 1945, the French regime kept thousands of Vietnamese patriots there, who in turn turned the prison into a "revolutionary school" to help sharpen the will of freedom fighters to liberate the nation.

The area was listed as a national relic site in 1962, and has become a tourist attraction for domestic and foreign visitors.-VNA