PANO - U.S. Army Pacific (USARPAC), in coordination with the Vietnam National Mine Action Center (VNMAC), conducted Humanitarian Mine Action training at the Technical Engineering School in Son Tay from August 8 to 31, 2016.  As part of a four-year program, this training will certify Vietnamese explosive ordnance and medical technicians in accordance with International Mine Action Standards.  The goal of this program is to collaboratively develop VNMAC as a sustainable training and education center capable of managing, resourcing, and training demining skills.

A Vietnamese explosive ordnance and medical technician in training

“This collaboration between the United States and Vietnam will enhance the capacity of future generations of technicians conducting mine disposal operations, both in Vietnam and in support of United Nations Peacekeeping Operations,” noted U.S. Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission Susan Sutton while visiting the training site.

The program provides trainees with a series of Explosive Ordnance Disposal and Medical Response Train-the-Trainer courses in preparation for them to become resident instructors for the Vietnam Mine Action Center.  The USARPAC training team consisted of nine personnel who worked with 15 explosive ordnance disposal technicians and 15 medical technicians from Vietnam to complete the first phase of training on August 31, 2016.  The second phase is scheduled to start in the summer of 2017.

The United States is the largest single donor to address the threats posed by unexploded ordnance in Vietnam and has contributed over $92 million since 1993.

Chung Anh