Wildfire breaks out at Vietnam national park

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Between 70 and 80 hectares of forest have been burned in a fire at Hoang Lien-Sa Pa National Park in the northern province of Lao Cai since Friday, an official said Sunday.

Ha Cong Tuan, deputy chief of the agriculture ministry's Vietnam Department of Forestry, told Thanh Nien that local authorities have sent 500 people to extinguish the fire at the park in Ta Van Commune.

However, it has been very difficult to send modern fire equipment to the site due to its mountainous location, to which it takes three hours to walk from the commune's headquarters, Tuan said.

"At the moment we mainly depend on human resources to extinguish the fire," he said. "So far we have yet to identify the cause."

According to the official, the new fire took place at the same site of a wild fire that occured in 1988.

Covering some 30,000 hectares, the Hoang Lien Sa Pa park was named as an ASEAN Heritage Park in 2003 in recognition of the area's uniqueness and preservation efforts. 

The forestry department sent out warnings about the risk of forest fire across the country on Sunday.

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