The disaster caused by the toxic substance continues to leave serious consequences.
Hundreds of thousands of people died and a similar number are suffering from lethal diseases, Major General Tran Ngoc Tho, chairman of the Association of Victims of Agent Orange/Dioxin of Ho Chi Minh City, recalled at a commemorative event.
According to journalistic sources, about 4.8 million Vietnamese people were exposed to this chemical substance, while three million others, who are their children, grandchildren and even great-grandchildren, are still affected, despite that the war ended almost 50 years ago.
What the US Department of Defense called “Operation Ranch Hand” began on August 10, 1961, and lasted a decade, during which some 80 million liters of toxic chemicals, 61 percent were Agent Orange, were sprayed on more than three million hectares of land in southern Vietnam.
With the founding of the Vietnamese Association for Victims of Agent Orange (VAVA) in 2004, the State earmarked tens of millions of dollars for monthly relief, medical care and functional rehabilitation of the victims and to support the affected areas, Col. Gen. Nguyen Van Rinh recalled.