Progress in talks with US
By Stephen Robson
Negotiations between Vietnam and the United States took place in Fiji from February 10 to 15. The US delegation included representatives from the State Department, Congress, the business community and academics.
The dialogue was sponsored by the US Aspen Institute.
Madame Binh, the head of the Vietnamese delegation from the National Assembly, told Green Left: "I think the dialogue in Fiji was helpful. The participants in the dialogue, especially those that were not in the government of the US, could understand ... Especially businessmen, academic circles very much want to see normalisation."
US capitalists are feeling the constraints of current US policy as businesses from a range of countries move to tie up deals.
In the middle of 1991, the United States presented what it call a road map for normalisation of relations.
"In the road map the US demands Vietnam take responsibility for the implementation of the political settlement in Cambodia. The other condition was the solution of the MIA problem", Madame Binh said.
With Vietnamese troops clearly out of Cambodia, the focus has shifted to US troops missing in action. "We see this as a humanitarian issue", Madame Binh explained. "We have done much to solve the question and we will continue."
Many of Vietnam's scarce resources have been devoted to solving the MIA issue. No mention is made in the US of the hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese MIAs killed by the invading forces of the US and its allies.
Madame Binh explained that there were 300,000 MIAs in Vietnam. "We have not been able to find their remains. The US ignores the humanitarian aspect of Vietnamese MIAs.
"We want normalised relations, but they must be on the basis of mutual respect and equality."