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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)


Vietnam Special Weapons

In congressional testimony in 1988, the Director of Naval Intelligence indicated that Vietnam was in the process of developing, or already had, chemical weapons. Newspaper reports suggest that Vietnam may have obtained chemical weapons from the former Soviet Union. Vietnam is also reported to have captured large stocks of U.S. riot control agents during and at the end of the Vietnam War. No public references have been made to an indigenous production capacity.

By 2009 Viet Nam had acceded to and fulfilled its obligations under the following international disarmament agreements:

  • The 1925 Protocol for the Prohibition of the Use of Asphyxiating, Poisonous or Other Gases, and of Bacteriological Methods of Warfare (The 1925 Geneva Protocol - Viet Nam acceded to the Protocol in December 1980);
  • The 1968 Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, NPT (Viet Nam acceded to the Treaty in June 1982);
  • The 1972 Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on Their Destruction, BWC (Viet Nam acceded to the Convention in June 1980).
  • The 1980 Convention on Prohibition or Restriction on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May Be Deemed to Be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects, CCW (Viet Nam signed the Convention in 1980, now considering its ratification ).
  • The 1993 Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction, CWC (Viet Nam acceded to the Convention in August 1998)
  • The 1995 South East Asia Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty, SEANWFZ (Viet Nam joined the Treaty in November 1996)
  • The 1996 Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, CTBT (Viet Nam signed the Treaty in September 1996 and ratified it in February 2006)
  • The IAEA Safeguard Agreement (Viet Nam signed it September 1989)
  • The IAEA Additional Protocol to the Safeguard Agreement, AP (Viet Nam signed AP in August 2007)
  • Viet Nam is a full Member of the Conference on Disarmament (CD) in Geneva, Switzerland.

Vietnam and other Southeast Asian countries have signed the Treaty on the South East Asia Nuclear Weapons Free Zone (SEANWFZ). Vietnam calls upon nuclear powers to participate in the Protocol of the Treaty in order to turn Southeast Asia into a permanent nuclear weapons free zone.

In accordance with the consistent policy of supporting and actively contributing to the common efforts of the international community for disarmament, Vietnam welcomes the initiatives on preventing the development, manufacturing, storage and use of WMD. At the same time, Vietnam holds that all countries have the right to research, develop, and transfer nuclear, chemical, and biological technologies for the sake of peace as regulated by international laws. Vietnam has taken part in and strictly observed many conventions, agreements, and protocols on non-proliferation of WMD and other international conventions on disarmament. Vietnam is seriously considering international conventions and treaties on defense-security issues, and actively preparing necessary conditions for fully implementing the duties required.

Ministry of Science and Technology announced that, on 03 July 2013, with the cooperation of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and Rosatom Nuclear Energy State Corporation (ROSATOM), Vietnam has completed the ship of the last 11 kilograms of highly enriched uranium (HEU) from Da Latís Nuclear Research Institute last (Vietnam) to the Russian Federation. With this shipment, Vietnam has completed its commitments in the Joint Declaration signed in October of 2006 in Hanoi between Nguyen Minh Triet, President of Vietnam and George Bush, U.S. President. in which, the two countries agreed the participation of Vietnam into fuel conversion program for research reactors from using highly-enriched uranium (HEU) into low-enriched uranium (LEU).

This event showed the consistent policy of Vietnam is to use nuclear energy for peace; ensure safety and security; mark a significant milestone for commitment of Vietnam to implement the Joint Declaration of the 2nd Summit on Nuclear Security in May 3 rd 2012 in Seoul, South Korea. Vietnam will continue to cooperate with IAEA and the international community in adopting the necessary measures to ensure nuclear safety, security, the implementation of policies for the development and use of nuclear energy for the peace and the non-proliferation nuclear.

The Director-General of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ambassador Rogelio Pfirter, paid an official visit to The Socialist Republic of Viet Nam on 26 and 27 September 2006 and met the Deputy Prime Minister, who also serves as the Foreign Minister of Viet Nam, H.E Mr. Pham Gia Khiem. In their meeting, Deputy Prime Minister Khiem renewed Viet Nam's continued support for the Organization in its mission to achieve the complete global elimination of chemical weapons. He reiterated his Government's staunch commitment to the Chemical Weapons Convention, a non-discriminatory multilateral disarmament and non-proliferation treaty that contributes to international peace and security.

Director-General Pfirter briefed Deputy Prime Minister Khiem on the status of the implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) and the efforts undertaken by the OPCW in fulfilling its mandate to implement the global ban on chemical weapons, by eliminating all stockpiles and preventing the proliferation and re-emergence of chemical weapons all over the world. He additionally stressed the significance of universal adherence to the Convention and of full implementation of all its provisions by Member States, to ensure its ultimate success. Director-General Pfirter commended Viet Nam for its exemplary implementation of the Convention and its close cooperation with the OPCW. Deputy Prime Minister Khiem and Director-General Pfirter also exchanged views on the challenges ahead that were being addressed by the OPCW, such as the verified destruction of the global chemical weapons stockpile and the potential threat posed by chemical weapons proliferation.

During his official visit, Director-General Pfirter also met H.E. Hoang Trung Hai, Minister of Industry, H.E. Mr. Nguyen Huy Hieu, the Vice Minister of Defense and H.E. Mr. Huu Hao Do, the Vice Minister of the Ministry of Industry, who is also the Chairman of the CWC National Authority. Ambassador Pfirter complimented the Vietnamese authorities for the progress achieved in the CWC's national implementation in Viet Nam, in particular since this legislation provides the essential legal and administrative basis, enabling States Parties to deter or pursue any breach of the CWC, including the terrorist acquisition or use of chemical weapons.




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