Military officers carry the coffin of Gen Nguyen Van Man during his funeral ceremony in Thua Thien Hue. Reuters
Vietnamese soldiers with heavy machinery and rescue dogs searched on Monday for the last remaining troops buried under a mudslide, after recovering 18 bodies from the latest in a week of deadly landslides caused by unrelenting rains.
Floods and mudslides during October have killed at least 93 people in central Vietnam and left 30 missing, among those four military, which has lost 29 personnel to the adverse weather, in what could be its highest number of peace-time casualties. Four bodies were found on Monday.
The landslide early on Sunday in the province Quang Tri buried 22 soldiers and was the fourth incident of its kind in the space of six days in central Vietnam, which is expecting more intense rainfall in the coming days.
The military, which plays a key role in Vietnam’s disaster response, has sent hundreds of rescuers, heavy equipment and search dogs to help the mission as the government tackles some of its worst floods in years.
In neighbouring Thua Thien Hue province, rescuers battled driving rain in search of at least 15 construction workers missing after a landslide a week ago. Eleven soldiers sent to find them were killed by a separate mudslide.
A family of six was killed when mud buried their house as they slept late on Saturday in Quang Tri province.
Floods in the region have inundated more than 120,000 houses, cut off traffic and forced schools to close. State media showed images of people in long-tail boats next to houses with water at roof level.
State television showed footage of people moving their cattle at midnight and being evacuated from their homes, among them some older residents who said it reminded them of the wartime era nearly five decades ago.
Every year monsoon rains hammer Myanmar and other countries across Southeast Asia, submerging homes, displacing thousands and triggering landslides.
The first remains of the 39 people found dead in a truck in Britain last month arrived in Vietnam early on Wednesday, capping a weeks-long wait by families eager to bury their loved ones.
The first of the remains arrived in Vietnam Wednesday morning before being quickly shuttled to their homes in the centre of the country, where many of the victims came from.
They were followed up and monitored by the security men after the first stopped on the side of the road, then the other followed him.
The Ministry stressed in a statement on Tuesday that its aim to continue expanding the scope of testing nationwide to facilitate the early detection of coronavirus cases and carry out the necessary treatment.
According to the data updated by the health ministry at 8am, the active cases declined to 1,63,816. With the fresh cases, the total tally climbed to 3,42,02,202, while the death toll climbed to 4,55,068 with 356 fresh fatalities.