The U.S. promises $50 million to victims of Agent Orange

23
Aug

The United States Government is going to provide financial assistance to people affected by Agent Orange during the Vietnam War

At a workshop organized by the Vietnamese Committee for the Elimination of Explosive Ordnance and Chemical Pollution (Office 701), the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) announced that it would spend $50 million to this end. The money will be spent on health care, rehabilitation and social services in Quangxi, Thiathien-Hue, Quang Nam, Bindinh, Dongnai, Binh Fuok and Taininh Provinces. 

Office 701 Chief of Staff Nhan Thanh Cong explained that there are 163,000 victims of “Agent Orange” in these regions. There are three to eight million of them in Vietnam, according to various estimates. 

“Agent Orange is a mixture of defoliants and herbicides used by Americans during the Vietnam War. Between 1961 and 1971, about 80 million litres of rainforest were sprayed over 30,000 square miles of rainforest. It was necessary to destroy the jungle where the guerrillas were hiding. Then it turned out that chemicals could cause cancer.

However, some firms responsible for the production of “Agent Orange” continue to deny the damage to their products. For example, Monsanto. In 2018, Vietnam promised to sue for the second time. The first time was in 2004 and was unsuccessful.

Last year, American and Vietnamese officials completed a $110 million project to clean up the soil in Danang. They also announced a similar project in Bienoa worth USD 390 million. Japan also promised its support. Shimizu Corporation is going to make the cleaning process easier and cheaper.

Source: Saigoneer. Translation: Anastasia Zabelina.

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