U.S. Representative Robert Earl Filner arrived in Ho Chi Minh City on January 4 on an eight day tour of Vietnam to monitor programs being conducted in various provinces for victims of Agent Orange.
He was welcomed at Tan Son Nhat airport by Senior Lieutenant General Nguyen Van Rinh, Chairman of the Vietnam Association for Victims of Agent Orange (VAVA) and Major General Tran Ngoc Tho, Chairman of the HCMC Association for Victims of Agent Orange.
On the same day, Robert Earl Filner visited the Ho Chi Minh temple, and burned incense to the country’s dear leader. Later he visited the museum of President Ho Chi Minh in the city.
|U.S. Congressman Robert Earl Filner (Source Internet)|
During his eight day tour, Mr. Filner intends to work with the Association for Victims of Agent Orange in some provinces such as Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang, Vung Tau, Quang Ngai and Quang Ninh.
U.S. Representative Robert Earl Filner (born September 4, 1942) is a member of the Democratic Party. He has previously served as Chairman of the House Committee on Veteran Affairs since 2007.
He was the chief sponsor for a draft act for U.S veterans who are victims of Agent Orange. He also campaigned for the law suit favoring victims of Agent Orange in Vietnam in the US Congress. In July 2011, Filner submitted to the U.S Congress the “act for support for Victims of Agent Orange”.
Previously, the Vietnam Association for Victims of Agent Orange (VAVA) had raised funds to set up three other centres in Hanoi, Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City. These rehabilitation centres would provide shelter, healthcare and treatment for victims of Agent Orange.
The centre will also act as a health facility, providing other services, such as acupuncture, for people in need of health consultancy for more common diseases.
It is planned that VAVA will coordinate to eventually build 55 such facilities in localities nationwide to help Agent Orange victims.
In Ho Chi Minh City, local authorities are calling upon sponsors to donate towards the construction of a large-scale project named “Lang Cam” (Village for Agent Orange Victims), which is planned to be built in Xuan Thoi Thuong Commune in Hoc Mon District.
This year, VAVA has also launched a campaign in the central and northern regions to raise funds for offering gifts to Agent Orange victims and their families for the traditional Tet Lunar New Year, which falls on January 23 this year.