Vietnamese Deputy Minister in Britain to Aid Essex Lorry Death Investigations

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In support of efforts to identify the victims of the Essex lorry death tragedy, Vietnamese deputy foreign minister travelled to Britain late on Sunday to aid investigations, state media said on Monday.

Vietnamese Prime Minister, Nguyen Xuan Phuc, requested a deputy foreign minister, whose name has not been revealed, to travel to Britain following a cabinet meeting on Sunday, according to local newspaper, VnExpress.

The deputy minister will lead a delegation aimed at speeding up the identification process of 39 victims of the lorry death tragedy.

Vietnam’s Foreign Affairs Ministry on Saturday called the deaths a serious humanitarian tragedy after British police announced that all the victims are believed to be Vietnamese.

Authorities in Vietnam have also taken blood samples from some of those with missing family members in order to test their DNA against victims from the lorry.

Files on at least four of the victims have been passed to Hanoi to help with the identification.

Essex police said they cannot announce the identity of victims at this point in time, but they have managed to get in touch with many of the families.

Since Friday, victims’ families have been receiving phone calls from British authorities confirming that their missing family members were among the dead.

As many as 28 families have reported missing relatives in the central Vietnamese provinces of Ha Tinh and Nghe An, according to local media reports.

According to the charity Ecpat, hundreds of Vietnamese nationals are trafficked to Britain each year.(dpa/NAN)


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