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Long Tan Anzac commemoration ruled out by Vietnam

< - TP HÀ NỘI Ngày 03/04/2017 Mã tin: 24883

Long Tan Anzac commemoration ruled out by Vietnam

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‘Low-key visits’ by small groups without media will still be permitted, Australia’s veterans’ affairs minister says

 
A 2011 memorial service at the Long Tan cross
 
 
A 2011 service at the Long Tan cross. Visitors to the site this year will not be permitted to wear uniforms or carry flags. Photograph: Carl Robinson

The Vietnamese government has confirmed there will be no official Anzac Daycommemoration at the Long Tan cross site this year.

The veterans’ affairs minister, Dan Tehan, said small groups would still be allowed “low-key visits” to the site without media, under rules to be set by Vietnamese authorities.

“While disappointing, we respect Vietnam’s right as a sovereign nation to determine the nature of commemorations held on its soil,” Tehan said on Friday.

Tehan said Australia would continue to work with Vietnam on the issue and thanked the government for allowing access for small groups making private visits.

Visitors won’t be permitted to wear medals or uniforms or carry banners or flags.

Potential visitors were warned last week this could be the outcome.

In August 2016 the Vietnamese government did not permit the planned Long Tan 50th anniversary commemoration service to take place at the site in Ba Ria-Vung Tau province. But events were held in Australia, including at the War Memorial and Parliament House.

Some 521 Australians were killed in Vietnam, including 18 at Long Tan, and more than 3,000 were wounded. About 60,000 Australians served in Vietnam between 1962 and 1973.

 

Source: Theguardian

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