Thursday, August 13, 2009

Sign the Petition: "Justice for Victims of Agent Orange".

Dear Friends,

Pls, visit Website

and sign in it if you feel that you are on the side of the Vietnamese Victims of Agent Orange.

Further, could you share this with your friends in order to demand Justice for the Victims.

Thank you very much in anticipation of your good will.

Don't let tears drop

Agent orange and its effect

Vietnam - Agent Orange

Dioxin in Vietnam

Dioxin, the toxic compound chemically known as 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin, or TCDD, is the most studied member of the dioxin category of chemical substances. Dioxin became publicly known after the Vietnam War due to its presence in Agent Orange, an herbicide used to defoliate the jungles of Southeast Asia. Use of Agent Orange was banned in the U.S. in 1970.

Exposure to dioxin comes from breathing particles that enter the air or from eating foods contaminated with the compound. During the Vietnam War, soldiers were exposed to dioxin in the air, water and food; more than 90 percent of all dioxin exposure comes through diet. It has been reported that the equivalent of 600 kg of dioxin was spilled on Vietnam during the decade between 1961 and 1971. This number is four times greater than the original amount reported by the U.S. after the war.

For decades, it has been known that dioxin was dangerous to the body, but it has not been until recent years that environmental and government groups have acknowledged the compound as a known carcinogen. Aside from causing cancer, dioxin has been linked to numerous other health problems, including diabetes, birth defects, learning disabilities, skin rashes, liver and reproductive system disorders and immune system abnormalities. The risk of these side effects is high in the population of Vietnam War veterans who were exposed to dioxin overseas, as well as populations of Vietnamese citizens who continue to be exposed through their ecosystem.

Studies of Vietnam veterans exposed to dioxin show that their children have a higher risk of being born with spina bifida, a birth defect that occurs when the neural tube fails to close during gestation. This often leads to mental retardation, paralysis, bowel and bladder problems. The research linking dioxin in Vietnam to the incidence of spina bifida in veterans'' children is so strong that the U.S. government compensates veterans whose children are born with the birth defect. There is still a high rate of birth defects among children born in Vietnam today.

Dioxin exposure in Vietnam also appears to increase risk of diabetes. Air Force troops whose responsibility it was to spray Agent Orange in Vietnam have been found to have higher dioxin levels than those not exposed to the Agent Orange. The troops with the higher dioxin levels were found to have a higher risk of diabetes than those with exposure levels similar to those of average Americans.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Viet Nam to try its best to ensure justice for Agent Orange victims

The war in Vietnam finished over 30 years but its wounds have never been healed yet, particularly the effects of the toxic chemical/dioxin sprayed by the U.S. Army. Recently, Vietnamese and foreign scientists have implemented studies in this issue. They have seen that effects of the Agent Orange/Dioxin heavily multi-face influenced on economic-social life, people’s health, and environment. Therefore, the requirements for resolving this issue are comprehensive, huge, urgent and can not be delayed. The Vietnamese State, social organizations, community have implemented some positive policies and acts to assist Agent Orange victims, cleaning environment. However, problems, which need to be resolved, are still huge and complicated.

Vietnam, US discuss Agent Orange/dioxin issues

Vietnam, US discuss Agent Orange/dioxin issues

A conference of the Vietnamese and US Pressure Group on Agent Orange/dioxin was held in Da Nang city on April 21 to review new progress in dealing with the consequences of Agent Orange/dioxin used by the US army during the war in Vietnam.

Present at the meeting were representatives of the Ford Foundation, UNICEF, the Office of the national steering board for overcoming the consequences of toxic chemicals used by the US during the Vietnam war (Office 33), the Vietnam Association for Victims of AO/dioxin (VAVA), Da Nang city, Quang Tri and Dong Nai provinces and a number of non-governmental organisations.

The participants help strong opinions about an agreement on the group’s forthcoming action plan and presented various solutions to resolve all the problems that have arisen during the process of dealing with the effects of the AO/dioxin.

Representatives of Office 33 delivered a comprehensive report on the AO/ dioxin issue in Vietnam and the progress of detoxification work being done at Da Nang and Bien Hoa airports.

Da Nang city and Quang Tri and Dong Nai provinces reported on the effects of AO/dioxin in their localities and possible cooperation programmes in the future.

According to Ton Nu Thi Ninh, who is the initiator and former co-chair of the Vietnam-US Pressure Group on AO/dioxin, the group is the most effective way of ensuring a concentrated approach by Vietnam and the US in the AO/dioxin matter.

Dr. Charles Bailey, Director of the Ford Foundation’s Special Initiative on AO/dioxin, said that in the 1960s, US troops used AO and other defoliants to destroy about 10 percent of forests and trees in Vietnam’s central and southern regions.

Chemicals containing dioxin are very harmful to people, he said, adding that even though the AO/dioxin was used by the US during the war, it remains an outstanding matter as exposure to AO/dioxin and chronic diseases are closely related to the increasing number of children being born with deformities.

AO/dioxin victims in Vietnam include soldiers and civilians who were present in the areas that were sprayed with AO/dioxin in the 1060s, their descendants and those who live near the former demilitarized zones contaminated by the dioxin.