|At the press conference
According to Colonel Doan Quang Hoa, Deputy Director of the ministry’s Policy Department, since 2012, up to 2,445 sets of remains of Vietnamese volunteer soldiers have been found and repatriated from Laos and 5,707 other from Cambodia.
Vietnam has expanded international cooperation with relevant foreign countries, organisations and individuals in the work, Hoa said, adding that the ministry aims to collect from 1,500 to 2,000 sets of remains each year.
During the press conference, the ministry also touched upon natural disaster prevention and control, and search and rescue operations.
Colonel Nguyen Huu Hung, Deputy Director of the ministry’s Search and Rescue Department, said in 2018 natural disasters left 218 people dead and missing, and destroyed thousands of houses and tens of thousands of hectares of crops and aquaculture, causing economic losses worth more than 20 trillion VND (860 million USD).
In the year and the first three months of 2019, the ministry mobilised over 299,000 officers and soldiers to cope with natural disasters, saving 1,560 people and guiding some 804,050 boats to find safe places.
Besides, the ministry also helped Laos deal with consequences of the collapse of the Xepian-Xe Nam Noy hydropower dam in Laos.
Hung said during 2019 and the years to come, the ministry will focus on improving the awareness of officers, soldiers and people about natural disaster response and search and rescue work, especially in natural disaster-prone areas.
In the second half of this year, the ministry will continue to provide consultations for the Party and State in national defence and security affairs, and coordinate with other forces in protecting national territorial integrity and sovereignty.