UN requests Vietnam to deploy Covid-19 testing center in South Sudan

By Phan Anh   December 13, 2020 | 11:36 pm PT
UN requests Vietnam to deploy Covid-19 testing center in South Sudan
A medical worker prepares to take Covid-19 swab samples in Quang Nam Province, central Vietnam, August 9, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Dac Thanh.
The United Nations (U.N.) recently requested Vietnam to deploy a Covid-19 testing center in South Sudan thanks to its successful efforts to contain the disease.

The testing center would help increase the U.N.’s capability to fight Covid-19 across the area overseen by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UMISS), Vietnam’s Department of Peacekeeping Operations stated at a Friday meeting between itself, the Vietnamese People’s Army, and other agencies related to the Ministry of National Defense.

The defense ministry urged Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to approve the U.N.’s request to support South Sudan with medical equipment produced by Vietnam to enhance relations between both countries, and support local peacekeeping forces in the country, the government news portal reported.

Phung Si Tan, deputy chief of staff of the Vietnamese People’s Army, said Vietnam’s second field hospital at UNMISS has helped boost the mission’s Covid-19 response. Vietnamese peacekeeping forces at the U.N. mission in Central African Republic have also supplied free masks to locals and employees at the mission’s headquarters, he said.

Vietnam has officially participated in U.N. peacekeeping operations since 2014. In October 2018, a field hospital was erected for the U.N. mission in South Sudan, while a second was built in November last year.

The nation has deployed 172 military officers and staff from the defense ministry to U.N. peacekeeping missions in Central Africa Republic and South Sudan, along with deputations to the Department of Peacekeeping Operations at the U.N. headquarters since 2014.

Vietnam has recorded 1,397 Covid-19 cases so far, 118 still active, most of whom are imported cases. Thirty-five have succumbed to the disease, many being elderly patients with underlying conditions like diabetes or kidney failure.

No community transmission has been recorded in two weeks.

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