Vietnam's Foreign Ministry has called attention to the link between a recent U.S. judicial verdict against Monsanto and dioxin victims in Vietnam.
The ministry's spokeswoman, Le Thi Thu Hang, stressed in a statement on Thursday that the March 19 verdict by a San Francisco jury is yet more evidence that weedicides could cause direct damage to the human body.
In the judgment, the court concluded that exposure to the agrochemical giant Monsanto's weed killer Roundup was a "substantial factor" in giving Edwin Hardeman, 70, of California non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and ordered the firm to pay him nearly $81 million in damages, compensation and medical expenses.
"As a nation that had suffered the heavy consequences of war, including Agent Orange, Vietnam demands that the companies that had provided the U.S. military with defoliants during the war must have the responsibility to help and assist in overcoming the damage caused by Agent Orange to Vietnam's people and environment," Hang said.
She also welcomed the U.S. Congress and government for assisting in resolving the consequences of war in Vietnam, saying this is widely supported by the people of both countries.
Hang said Vietnam wishes for these efforts to be continued with the participation of the companies responsible, including Monsanto.
Founded in 1901 in Missouri, Monsanto began producing agrochemicals in the 1940s. It was acquired by Bayer for more than $62 billion last June.