US lawyer: US Court’s verdict on AO victims wrong
QĐND - Tuesday, October 07, 2008, 21:1 (GMT+7)
Nguyen Van Quy (on the wheel chair) on the way to New York Court of Appeals on June 2007, three weeks before he died. Photo: VietNamNet Bridge
An US lawyer has said the US Appeal Court had issued a wrong verdict regarding Vietnamese Agent Orange victims’ claims against a number of US chemical companies producing dioxin-containing herbicide sprayed during the Vietnam war.
Jonathan Moore, member of the lawyers’ team representing the victims, spoke out against the US Appeal Court’s dismissal of the Vietnamese AO victim’s claims as the Vietnam Agent Orange/Dioxin Victims’ Association (VAVA) on Oct. 6 submitted a petition to the US Supreme Court to request for reconsideration of the US Appeal Court’s verdict.
According to the lawyer, the 41-page petition includes representations demonstrating that verdicts reached by the US Hearing and Appeal Courts were not in accordance with the US’s current or past legal procedures.
The petition points out that the verdicts passed by the US Hearing Court and then upheld by the Appeal Court intentionally denied the impact of toxic dioxins sprayed by the US armed forces during the Vietnam war, arguing that the chemicals used were herbicides and were not toxic to humans.
Prof. Ngo Thanh Nhan, coordinator of the US-based Vietnam Agent Orange Relief Responsibility Campaign (VAORRC), said the Vietnamese AO victims’ lawsuit has been increasingly attracting the attention from the US press circle, veterans of the Vietnam war and friendly Americans who have raised a drive to support the lawsuit.
Two Vietnamese AO victims met with local press in front of the US Supreme Court building after lodging the petition.
The 72-year-old Dang Hong Nhut and 22-year-old Tran Thi Hoan, who represented two generations of AO victims, called on the US Supreme Court to return justice to AO victims not only in Vietnam but also the US and other countries.
The two victims plan to travel to 11 US cities to campaign for public support for the lawsuit.
During the 10 years of war in Vietnam between 1961 and 1971, US forces dumped approximately 80 million litres of herbicides onto Vietnamese soil, containing almost 400 kg of dioxins. An estimated 4.8 million people were exposed to the toxic substance with around 3 million of these being sufferers from the effects of AO.