Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs
Testimony before the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and the Global Environment Committee on Foreign Affairs
July 15, 2010
Chairman Faleomavaega, Ranking Member Manzullo, and Members of the Subcommittee, thank you for inviting me to testify today on the topic of United States engagement with Vietnam on issues related to Agent Orange.
It is important to place U.S.-Vietnam cooperation on the complex and challenging issues surrounding Agent Orange in the context of progress in our overall bilateral relationship. This year marks the 15th anniversary of our diplomatic relationship with Vietnam. Over this short period, U.S.-Vietnam cooperation has steadily matured into a robust bilateral relationship, characterized by mutual respect and shared interests. We continue to make progress on a growing range of issues, from trade liberalization, health and environment, to education, nuclear safety, and security. Our strong collaboration on these issues has created a positive environment that has allowed frank discussions of matters on which we do not agree, such as human rights. USAID/Vietnam works in close partnership with the Vietnamese government, and with our colleagues in the Departments of Defense and Health and Human Services, and in the Environmental Protection Agency, to implement a broad foreign assistance program. As part of that program, USAID has provided over $330 million in the last ten years.
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