Vietnam wants the agrochemical company Monsanto to pay compensation for the consequences of spraying harmful agents by US troops during the war in the middle of the last century, the Independent reported with reference to a statement of a representative of the Vietnamese Foreign Ministry.
“Vietnam has suffered tremendous consequences from the war, especially with regard to the lasting and devastating effects of toxic chemicals, including Agent Orange (a mixture of herbicide and defoliant that cause leaf loss and the destruction of vegetation”),” said Nguyen Phuong Tra.
The Vietnam official referred to the decision of the Supreme Court of California, which in early August ordered Monsanto to pay $ 289 million in compensation to a school gardener who fell ill with lymphoma after working with the substance produced by the company. The verdict created a precedent and disproved the earlier statements that the herbicides of Monsanto and other companies that the US army used during the war were harmless, Nguyen Phuong Thra said.
Monsanto, for its part, noted that the firm was only one of the nine contractors of the US government during the Vietnam War, and the specifications and rules for the use of the “Orange” agent were developed by the US authorities.
In 1961-1971, Americans sprayed 45 million liters of Agent Orange in Vietnam in order to deprive their opponents of shelter and food. Dioxin, which is contained in the “agent Orange”, leads to the spread of birth defects and cancer.