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Tiếng Việt

Speech of Snr.Lt. General Nguyen Van Rinh, President of VAVA, at "2nd Annual Dialogue on War Legacies and Peace in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia" (Wasington DC, 13-15/10/2023)

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am very happy to be back in Washington DC to attend the second “Dialogue on War Legacies and Peace in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia” at the US Institute of Peace.

First of all, I would like to thank the Organizing Committee for inviting me to attend and speak at this Dialogue. Over the past 2 days, we have discussed many issues related to the consequences of the war and peace.

 Dialogue about "Consequences of War and Peace", we are obligated to mention that world history is marked with images of many wars, all wars are cruel and its consequences can not be compensated. The destruction of the war has caused damage to people and properties, many buildings and civilizational achievements were destroyed by war and never can be restored. The consequences of war are extremely great, it is the obsession in the minds of every citizen, the remnants of war take a lot of years for people to overcome.

In Vietnam, the chemical war was even more dire. In spite of the fact that the war has been over for nearly 50 years, overcoming the consequences of the war is still something that all war-parties must pay attention to resolve. Vietnam has made efforts to heal the wounds of war, improve the environment, clear mines, and take care of implementing social policies... The legacy of the war has left too much pain, loss and severe consequences for many generations of Vietnamese people.

 Recently, in the spirit of "putting aside the past, looking forward to the future", Vietnam and the United States have continued to promote more effective and practical solutions to heal the wounds of war. After 28 years of normalizing diplomatic relations between Vietnam and the US (July 12, 1995) and after 10 years of establishing a comprehensive partnership (July 25, 2013), on September 10, 2023, General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam Nguyen Phu Trong and the United State President Joe Biden signed an agreement to upgrade the relationship between the two countries into a "comprehensive strategic partnership...". Cooperation to overcome the consequences of the war is considered as one of the foundations of the two countries' relationship, making an important contribution to the process of reconciliation, healing and building trust between the two countries, opening up new opportunities for cooperation in other important areas.


In that spirit, a series of proposed projects had been and have been being implemented, recognizing joint efforts in Vietnam-US cooperation on overcoming the consequences of war, including the completion of the dioxin detoxification project at Da Nang airport; continue implementation the dioxin detoxification project at Bien Hoa airport; the project to support and improve quality of life for people with disabilities in 8 provinces where had been heavily sprayed with Agent Orange; the communication project on overcoming  consequences of land mines and toxic chemicals after the war. The US government has sponsored a number of programs in Vietnam for nearly three decades with the purpose of clearing landmines and explosive materials, educating about the risks of mines and explosive materials, and supporting the victims of toxic agent orange

 Dear delegates!

Although the US government has provided support to Vietnam, those supports are still very modest compared to the serious consequences that the US has caused to the Vietnamese people. The new support only focuses on solving environmental problems, while the detection and health care and life of Agent Orange victims are still very limited. Many people have passed away because they didn't have enough time to wait. The pain of the war's consequences still haunts the living and has not been completely resolved in reality.

 In the coming time, for the United States' help to Vietnam in overcoming the consequences of war to be commensurate with the relationship between Vietnam and the United States in the new era, we need to resolve a number of issues such as:

 Firstly: The two sides need to build a cooperation mechanism to resolve the consequences of war in a stable, long-term, and systematic way.

 Second: Vietnam hopes that the United States will continue to promote stronger cooperation in the field of environmental treatment, overcoming the consequences of land mines and toxic chemicals/dioxins in Vietnam, mobilizing and committing resources  to clean dioxin pollution at Bien Hoa airport and Phu Cat airport, coordinate to evaluate the results of dioxin treatment at A So airport (A Luoi district, Thua Thien Hue province);

 Third: Continue and effectively implement projects to support improving the life quality of people with disabilities, who are the victims of Agent Orange; Expand areas, add resources, and practically help victims of Agent Orange improve the miserable lives that they have been suffering.

 Fourth: Request the US Government to support the construction of a dioxin analysis center, medical examination and treatment facilities, rehabilitation facilities and the provision of medicines and medical equipment to help Vietnamese victims of Agent Orange in improving their health and prevent inheritance from one generation to the next.

 Fifth: Promote communication, focus on completing upgrading the display contents of Vietnam-US cooperation on overcoming the consequences of landmines and toxic chemicals/dioxins at the War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City and the Chemical War Remnants Exhibition House at A So Airport.

 Sixth: Organize exchange activities, create conditions for young people with disabilities in general and victims of Agent Orange in particular to be able to work and interact with international (American) friends, encourage them to be confident, learn more and strive for their future.

 As a country that has suffered the severe consequences of war, we always wish and call on countries to respect peace, don't let war happen, and prohibit the research and use of chemical weapons and weapons of mass destruction so that humanity can live in a world of peace, stability, cooperation and development.

 Thank you and good health to all delegates!



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