|Deputy Minister of Defence Lieutenant General Lê Chiêm (right, in front) welcomes the chairman of the Cambodian special task committee Pol Sa-ruon at a meeting of the Vietnamese and Cambodian special task committees in HCM City on Wednesday. — VNS Bồ Xuân Hiệp
HCM CITY — The remains of 758 Vietnamese experts and volunteers, only two of whom have been identified by name, were repatriated from Cambodia late last year and this year during the dry season, when searches for remains were conducted.
Vietnamese and Cambodian special task force committees in HCM City yesterday announced the figure during a meeting to review the outcomes of collaboration between the two countries in search and repatriation efforts in Cambodia.
The special task committee for Vietnamese has provided US$420,000 for a Cambodia special task force for the search and repatriation of Vietnamese martyrs’ remains during the 2017-18 dry season, according to Deputy Minister of Defence Lieutenant General Lê Chiêm.
Chiêm, who is also head of Việt Nam’s special task committee, said the positive results were strongly attributed to the close cooperation between the two countries.
“Việt Nam highly appreciates Cambodia’s special task committee’s guidance and efficient operation in the search and repatriation of the remains of Vietnamese soldiers who sacrificed their lives during wartime in Cambodia,” Chiêm told Việt Nam News.
Pol Sa-ruon, chairman of the Cambodian special task committee, said that sound coordination between the two countries would bring further positive results.
The retrieval of soldiers’ remains has been difficult because of a lack of information as most of the remains are in locations that are difficult to access.
In the future, the two countries will direct relevant authorities to carry out the search and repatriation of martyrs’ remains and, at the same time, seek more information from local residents.
Nearly 4,000 Vietnamese martyrs who died during wartime in Cambodia have not been found.
The two countries have targeted completion of the search, gathering and repatriation of martyrs’ remains by 2020. — VNS