Agent Orange victims appeal to White House

South Korea’s Vietnam War veterans said they will deliver a letter of appeal to the White House on Thursday seeking recognition and compensation for their suffering from the deadly defoliant the United States used during the war, Yonhap News Agency reported yesterday.
Tens of protesters gathered at Lafayette Park across from the White House for a weeklong vigil that will end Friday.They rallied in New York last week and delivered a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, Yonhap reported.
The U.S. officially says it sprayed 19 million liters of Agent Orange and other defoliants in Vietnam between 1962 and 1971. Some 320,000 South Korean troops fought with the U.S. side in the war, with 5,000 of them killed in action and 11,000 others wounded.
Washington has yet to compensate South Korean servicemen suffering from the effects of the defoliants. South Korean veterans believe their claims are being overlooked.
Meanwhile, the U.S. House of Representatives introduced a bill in February calling on the government to compensate civilians as well as veterans who suffered disability or death from exposure to Agent Orange.

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