PARIS — The committee in support of Trần Tố Nga, the Vietnamese woman who sued US firms for manufacturing the toxic AO defoliant used by US forces during the war in Việt Nam on June 24 (local time) offered a charitable meal in Paris to raise funds for her lawsuit.
The meal, the third of its kind after those in March and May, was attended by more than 90 people, including Vietnamese Ambassador to France Đinh Toàn Thắng and MP Sandrine Rousseau of the Europe Écologie les Verts (EELV) – Green Party.
Nga said she was happy and felt touched when seeing a large number of overseas Vietnamese and French friends attending this event.
She stated that this is a great honour and encouragement for her in this arduous and long battle.
In 2014, Nga, who used to be a war correspondent in south Việt Nam during wartime, sued the multinational companies, including Monsanto – Bayer, that produced or supplied herbicides for the US during the war in Việt Nam.
On May 10, 2021, the Crown Court of Evry city in the suburbs of Paris rejected her lawsuit, saying it did not have jurisdiction to hear the case, a ruling that disappointed the Vietnamese and international public.
However, Nga and her lawyers decided to file an appeal, and the struggle for justice for AO/dioxin victims is still underway.
From 1961 to 1971, the US army sprayed 80 million litres of herbicides which contained about 400kg of dioxin – one of the most toxic substances, on large areas in the central and southern Việt Nam to destroy the vegetation that they considered to be hideouts of the northern Việt Nam troops. Over the last 60 years, the effects of this deadly chemical have lingered in land, water, and many people’s bodies. More than 4.8 million Vietnamese people are suffering from its consequences.
Every year, Việt Nam earmarks more than VNĐ10 trillion (over US$440 million) from its budget to provide aid and health care for AO/dioxin victims and to assist the disadvantaged areas severely affected by the herbicides. — VNS
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