Unexploded bombs kill 4 every day in Vietnam: Deputy PM

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UXO on display at an exhibition at the Engineer Corps Museum, Lac Long Quan Street, Hanoi, from March 25 to April 5

Unexploded bombs have been killing four people and injuring six others every day since the Vietnam War ended in 1975, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Thien Nhan said Sunday.

"After 1975, 9,000 of Vietnam's 10,700 communes were identified as contaminated by unexploded ordnance (UXO)," he said .

"Though the Engineer Corps have worked hard to defuse them, 20 percent of the area remains contaminated. "

He was speaking at a conference held in Hanoi by Committee 504, the national agency tasked with cleaning up UXO.

More than 40,000 people have died and 60,000 others have been injured in the last 37 years.

According to the government, Vietnam needs US$10 billion to remove the estimated 800,000 tons  of UXO and billions more to resettle people and ensure social welfare at contaminated communes.

At the current pace it will take 300 years for total decontamination.

Nhan hailed the contributions of international organizations to the process and hoped that would shorten the expected time and "bring peace to Vietnamese."

Committee 504 hopes to clear all UXO within 100 years.

It will focus on six provinces considered to be the worst affected -- Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri, Thua Thien Hue, Quang Nam, and Quang Ngai.

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