Vietnam's southern hub looks to establish tourist police

By Dam Huy, Thanh Nien News

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Foreigners in the backpack area, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City / PHOTO COURTESY OF TUOI TRE
A plan to establish tourist police in Ho Chi Minh City will be submitted to the municipal authorities next month for approval, a local official has said.
Hua Ngoc Thuan, vice chairman of the city People’s Committee, told a meeting on Friday that after getting the city’s approval, the plan will be submitted to central authorities before being launched.
Currently, in the city, which attracted 4.1 million foreign tourists last year, green uniformed forces run by Voluntary Youth Public Benefit Service Co. Ltd. work to guide tourists and oversee security at tourist areas.
At the meeting, Col. Nguyen Tan Dat, chief of District 1’s police division, said the backpack area in Pham Ngu Lao Ward, one of the city’s most famous tourist areas popular with foreigners, is a hub for crimes like robbery and drug abuse.
Criminals include both Vietnamese and foreigners, he said.
According to the official, the district’s police division will consider transferring leaders of ward police divisions who fail to tackle local security problems.
In fact, a vice chairman of the Pham Ngu Lao Ward People’s Committee has been transferred for failing to stop vendors from illegally occupying sidewalks, Dat said.

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