Endangered vulture caught in northern Vietnam

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The "big, weird" bird caught by an ethnic resident in Son La Province last month has been identified by a zoologist as the Cinereous Vulture. A "big, weird" bird caught by an ethnic minority resident in the northwestern province of Son La last month has been identified by a zoologist as the Cinereous Vulture (also known as Black Vulture, Monk Vulture, or Eurasian Black Vulture). Professor Vo Quy, a noted zoologist, told online newspaper VnExpress the bird was not "strange" but it is rather rare. On January 20, Le Van Lien, the 62-year-old resident of an ethnic minority village in Quynh Nhai District saw the bird swoop down on a pond near his house. Lien said the bird looked like it was starving and could not fly any more. He caught the bird, brought it home and fed it with meat and vegetable. The 7.5-kilogram bird, with a wingspan of 2.8 meters and a body 0.7 meters long, has brought many curious villagers to his house. The bird eats one and a half kilograms of meat and … [Read more...]

New Year wishes of the poor

For many people, the New Year means a burden of worry or something else, not a time for celebration. The 59-year-old porter Le Van Lien works at mid night in Vinh Kim fruit market in Tien Giang ProvincePhoto: Tuoi Tre With the traditional lunar New Year festival approaching, poor people have felt pressure to save at least enough for a good meal to offer on the altar in the home for their late relatives, and for offering small gifts to children. At 8 pm, in a thatch house in An Lac Tay Commune of Ke Sach District in Soc Trang Province, Doan Thi Dep hangs up the mosquito net for her three and seven-year-old children to go to bed, and then rushes to a drain near her house to collect snails. The 40-year-old woman swam into the water in cold weather. Though the job is hard, Dep always thinks of her children, who would otherwise be hungry during Tet when she is unemployed. Now, she does not even have rice in her house to feed the children. Thinking of her … [Read more...]

Buffalo injures 5 at Do Son fighting festival

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One buffalo charged into the spectators at the annual buffalo fighting festival in northern Hai Phong City's Do Son District yesterday morning, injuring 5 people. The buffalo managed to escape from its owner's control and then attacked viewers, witnessed said. All the victims were taken to the Do Son District Hospital for emergency treatment but two of them, with severe wounds, were later transferred to the Viet - Tiep Friendship Hospital for surgery. Le Van Lien, 47, had some muscles and ligaments in the legs fractured while Bui Van Dong, 33, suffered serious injuries in the bladder, unitary tract, and anus. The three other victims were discharged from the hospital in the afternoon. Two buffaloes were fighting at the annual festival in Do Son yesterdayPhoto: Tuoi Tre Police prepare to take the victims hit by the buffalo to Do Son District Hospital The Vietnam Coal and Minerals Group, which paid insurance for the viewers, have given compensations to the victims, said Hoang … [Read more...]

Trading begins at HCMC annual Tet flower markets

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Colorful Tet flower markets opened in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) Wednesday, selling popular Lunar New Year varieties such as ochna and peach blossom. Ochna blossoms, which southern Vietnamese believe bring good luck, were showcased on the Pham Ngu Lao Street-side of downtown September 23 Park, HCMC's prime flower market. Tourists view flowers displayed at the market … [Read more...]

Mountainous bridge has tallest pier in Vietnam

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Pa Uon bridge (Source: kyluc.vn) Pa Uon Bridge, spanning Da River Lake in Quynh Nhai district of the northern mountainous province of Son La, has been recognised as the bridge with the tallest pier, 98.6 metres, in Vietnam. The recognition was made by the Vietnam Book of Records on February 28. Pa Uon in Chieng On commune is part of the National Road 279 that connects Son La with other northwestern provinces such as Lai Chau, Dien Bien, and Lao Cai. The 9-metre-wide bridge is 918 metres long while its access roads at both ends total 500 metres. It consists of two abutments and 11 piers with the main pier as tall as 98.6 metres. The height from the river bed to the bridge surface is 103.8 metres. The same day, a boat racing festival was organised under Pa Uon Bridge by the Quynh Nhai People’s Committee. The annual event, attracting eight teams with over 200 rowers this year, was aimed to honour local cultural identities and promote sports among the public.-VNA … [Read more...]

List of 127 national projects calling for foreign investment

VGP - PM Nguyen Tan Dung has approved a list of 127 national projects calling for foreign investment from now to 2020. The projects are categorized into five: technical infrastructure, social infrastructure, agriculture, processing and preserving and production-service sectors. No.ProjectLocalityTotal Capital(million USD)Investment modelContactI. TECHNICAL INFRASTRUCTURE 1.1 Traffic infrastructure I.1.1 Roads 1 North-South expressway project, Ninh Binh - Thanh Hoa segment and Thanh Hoa - Nghi Son segment. Ninh Binh, Thanh Hoa 1,867 PPP Management Board of PPP projects under the Ministry of Transport No. 80 Tran Hung Dao street, Ha Noi Tel: 84-4-39410775 2 Dau Giay - Phan Thiet expressway. Dong Nai, Binh Duong 757 PPP Management board of PPP projects under the Ministry of Transport No. 80 Tran Hung Dao street, Ha Noi Tel: 84-4-39410775 3 Bien Hoa - Vung Tau expressway. Dong Nai, Bà Rịa - Vung Tau 1,175 PPP, ODA … [Read more...]

Troops help storm-hit localities

Supporting locals in Quynh Nhai district, Son La province with building houses

PANO - Units from Military Zones 1 and 2 on July 22nd continued to help locals overcome the aftermath of Typhoon Rammasun. >>>Soldiers keep helping storm victims >>>Lang Son troops help locals overcome storm's consequences * The Lang Son provincial Military Command and Border Guard Command, and Unit 338 and Division 3 (Military Zone 1) sent about 2,000 troops and militiamen to clear landslides along roads, collect the garbage, and repair damaged houses. … [Read more...]

Charming Northwest

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Visiting the Northwest, you will experience an unforgettable trip on wild paths and discover many tourism treasures. You will be tempted by the splendid beauty of majestic Fansipan Mountain and Y Ty Jungle in Lao Cai province and Ha Giang nature reserve in Ha Giang province and catch sight of spectacular scenery of the "Big Four Passes" of the Northwest, namely O Quy Ho Pass (Lao Cai province), Khau Pha Pass (Yen Bai province), Pha Din Pass (Dien Bien province) and Ma Pi Leng (Ha Giang province). You can also contemplate waterfalls pouring from hundreds of metres high with water sprays jetting into the air like Bac Waterfall and Tinh Yeu Waterfall (Lao Cai province), Dai Yem Waterfall (Son La) and Tac Tinh Waterfall (Lai Chau) or simply live with the bustling atmosphere of unique Northwest markets like Dong Van Market (Ha Giang province), Bac Ha Market (Lao Cai) and Sa Pa Central Market. The most famous market in the Northwest is Khau Vai Love Market in Meo Vac district, Ha Giang … [Read more...]

Resettlement changes lives of farmers

Muong Lay Town in Dien Bien Province resettled nearly 3,600 families in 2009 and 2010, paving the way for the Son La Hydro-power Plant. Town leaders are looking at ways to stabilise lives of new settlers who used to rely only on growing rice. — VNS Photo Ngoc Duy

by Thu Huong Le DIEN BIEN-SON LA — As one drives closer to the centre of Muong Lay Town, about 110km from Dien Bien Phu City, the once idyllic village now looks like a major construction site, with excavators, trucks and containers clearly visible. But roads and bridges make this isolated mountain town feel strangely urban. Groups of kids burst out from a nearby local school, heading home in an area where rows of wooden, stilt-houses line up so neatly, and so close to one another. Formerly known as Lai Chau, the town of 11,650 residents is nestled in a valley carved from spectacular mountains by the Da River. Nearly 3,600 families were resettled there in 2009 and 2010, paving the way for the Son La Hydropower Plant, the largest dam in Southeast Asia, which became fully operational last December. Three years after the town was moved to above the water-level, Tu Ba Minh, chairman of Muong Lay People's Committee, said it had become such a successful model for the resettling process … [Read more...]

Executive Board of the Vietnam Farmers’ Union elected

(VOVworld) - The 6th National Congress of the Vietnam Farmers' Union on Tuesday voted to elect 122 members of the Executive Board for the 2013-2018 term. Delegates introduced candidates to the Executive Committee and heard suggestions by a number of provinces and sectors on ways to improve the performance of farmers' unions and their members nationwide. Ngo Dang Che is Chairman of Dong Anh district's farmers' union in Hanoi: "We look forward to an executive committee of young and competent members, who understand farmers and will recommend to the Party and State appropriate policies to support them." The delegates also hope that the Executive Board will consult Government on policies to assist farmers, thereby contributing to national economic development. Hoang Thi Thanh is Chairwoman of Quynh Nhai district's farmers' union in Son La province: "We hope that the new Executive Board will better care for ethnic minorities and focus on loans to help farmers develop their productive … [Read more...]

Rock falls threaten residents in Son La

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Illustrative image.—VNS File Photo SON LA (VNS)- Rock falls are threatening the lives of about 40 families living by the foot of a mountain in the northern province of Son La's Quynh Nhai District, according to Lo Van Thich, deputy head of the local Committee for Flood and Storm Control and Natural Disasters Relief. Concerns over falling rocks were raised after a four-year-old died and her mother and two other neighbours were injured in the Ca Village, Chieng Khoang Commune when a huge rock suddenly fell onto their house last Thursday. The house's roof was smashed by hundreds of small pieces of rock. "I was in the middle of a party and I heard a loud blast that sounded like a bomb resounding into the mountain cliff," recalled father of the victim Ca Van Hoa, 25. "I rushed home to find our houses had collapsed rocks. I managed to bring my wife out of the ruins and learnt from her that our daughter was still inisde. I shouted out to her but there was no reply. "Later, they found … [Read more...]

Cyclonic storm causes massive damage across North Vietnam

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Cyclonic storm accompanied with heavy rains lashed several parts of the northern mountainous regions on May 1, causing mass scale damage to thousands of homes. Cyclone blew roofs off several houses in Krong Ana District in Dak Lak Province on May 1 (Photo: SGGP) According to initial reports from the National Steering Committee for Flood and Storm Prevention and Control, the cyclonic storm blew off rooftops of nearly 6,000 houses and collapsed 90 others early on May 1. Heavy rains and lightening injured four people, smashed 30 houses, and blew off roofs of at least 400 others and 23 schools, flattened 16 electric poles and devastated tens of hectares of farm crops in Bao Yen District and Lao Cai City. Total damage is estimated at VND5 billion (US$240,000) in Lao Cai City. Ninety percent of the houses in Nam Det Commune in Bac Ha District were damaged with several more totally caved in. Son La Province reported three persons injured and 42 houses that had either collapsed or … [Read more...]

Whirlwinds ravage northern mountain provinces

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(VOV) - Heavy rains accompanied by whirlwinds on April 30 caused huge property losses to northern mountain provinces. Whirlwinds kill six and injure 111 in the south Whirlwinds wreak havoc in the north Whirlwinds, flash floods kill three in Son La In Son La province, the natural disaster left three locals injured in Muong La, caused 19 houses in Mai Son, Muong La, Bac Yen and Quynh Nhai districts collapse, and blew off 23 houses' roofs. In Quynh Nhai district alone, 14 boats and 19 fish cages sank. The provincial search and rescue forces are coordinating with relevant agencies and local authorities to help local residents repair damaged houses to stabilise their lives. Some images of the devastating areas in Son La: *** Strong winds also injured one resident and damaged 3,600 houses in neighbouring Yen Bai province. They destroyed nearly 200 hectares of rice and subsidiary crops, and brought down many old big trees and 12 electrical poles. Initial losses are … [Read more...]

Industry and trade 2012 overview

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(VEN) - 1. In 2012, seven years after construction began, the Son La Hydropower Plant - the largest power plant of its kind in South East Asia - was inaugurated three years ahead of schedule. Local residents who had to move from the project site have been provided with new accommodation. One of the resettlement areas is in Nghe Toong Village, Muong Giang Commune, Quynh Nhai District, Son La Province. For four years since it was the resettlement, this mountainous village has undergone considerable changes. An asphalted road runs along the village with lots of new houses along its sides. Villagers have made a shift from rice cultivation to industrial livestock breeding. The village has a central market, tap water, kindergartens, primary and secondary schools. Government Resolution 30A on the Rapid and Sustainable Poverty Reduction Program will help local residents develop aquaculture and fisheries. Also in 2012, it was proposed to weed out 15 small-scale hydropower projects … [Read more...]

SOCIETY IN BRIEF 15/10

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US launches ordnance clean up programme A US government-funded programme to remove unexploded ordnance (UXO) and landmines in the central province of Quang Nam was launched on Friday, Oct 12. At the launch ceremony, US Ambassador to Viet Nam David Shear announced a grant of US$1.6 million to the Mines Advisory Group (MAG), the US Government's partner for clearance operations in central Quang Binh and Quang Nam provinces. In July 2012, MAG in Viet Nam commenced community liaison operations in the province's Thang Binh District to determine the locations of UXO that were affecting the community. This information will be used to help MAG Viet Nam's Explosive Ordnance Disposal team when the project starts. … [Read more...]

Drug trafficker arrested in Lai Chau

LAI CHAU (VNS)— Police swooped on the mountainous province of Lai Chau in the early hours of Sunday to catch two men smuggling heroin into the province, seizing one heroin cake, two cell phones, a motorbike and other items. The arrested, Hoang Van Van, 39 and Tong Van Dai, 36, both reside in Chieng Khoang commune in the northern mountainous Son La Province's Quynh Nhai District, admitted buying the heroin from a person named Tien in the province's Thuan Chau District at a cost of VND140 million (US$6,600). … [Read more...]