Tuesday, June 09, 2020, 09:28 (GMT+7)
Promoting the Military’s core role in responding to natural calamities, and search and rescue

Facing the increasingly high requirements of responding to incidents, natural calamities search and rescue (SAR), together with other sectors and industries, the Military has promoted well its core role in implementing this important mission, contributing to the protection of people and property.

Fully aware of the consequences caused by incidents, calamities, and diseases, the Central Military Commission, Ministry of National Defence, directly the General Staff, have advised the Party and State to promulgate a number of resolutions, directives, legal documents, such as: The Directive No. 30/2017/NĐ-CP, dated 21 March 2017 of the Government on Regulations for responding to incidents calamities and SAR; the Directive No, 02/2009/NĐ-CP, dated 2nd January 2019 of the Government on Civil Defence, and many other strategies, plans at national – level as legal ground for the ministries, sectors and localities to unify their actions nation-wide. Accordingly, the Central Military Commission issued the Resolution No. 689-NQ/QUTW, dated 10th October 2014 on “Preventing, controlling and alleviating the consequences of calamities, incidents, SAR until 2020 and beyond”, and instructed the entire Military to implement the work in a synchronous and drastic manner. As a result, many important achievements have been gained.

Division 316 reviews 5 years implementing the Resolution 689 of the Central Military Commission (Photo: quankhu2.vn)

Notably, the Military has stuck to its functions and responsibilities. It both adheres to training and combat readiness while actively participating in the prevention and control of calamities, incidents, diseases and SAR. Its units and agencies have grasped and effectively implemented the resolutions and directives of the Ministry of National Defence, the General Staff; actively grasped and anticipated the situation to build and proposed plans; conducted training and exercises; made preparation in force, equipment; maintained alert regimes; coordinated with other forces to settle the situations; promoted international cooperation to mobilised external resources for improving the capability in response to the incidents, calamities, disasters, diseases and SAR. The Military commands at all levels have advised the local party committees, authorities to propagate and persuade people to raise  their awareness and sense of responsibility in response  to incidents, calamities, disasters and SAR; consolidate the Steering Committee for disaster prevention and control, SAR at all levels; adjust and supplement the plans to suit the areas of operation. As thoroughly implementing the guideline of “4-on-the-spot”, they have successfully dealt with and overcome many situations and incidents on land and on sea in an opportunely and effectively manner, hence minimising losses in people and property.

It is anticipated that in the coming time, due to global climate change, there will be extreme weather conditions and phenomena, leading to more disasters affecting the fast and sustainable socio-economic development and the cause of national construction and defence. To enhance the capability in response to the incidents, disasters, diseases and SAR, minimising the losses in people and property, agencies and units of the Military should thoroughly carry out the following measures:

1. Continue to promote the core role in consulting the Party and State about this mission. After thoroughly studying and accurately anticipating the causes and impacts of the disasters, units and agencies, particularly the Department for Search and Rescue should coordinate with related agencies to advise the National steering committee to direct the ministries, sectors and localities to consolidate the structure of the offices for disaster prevention and control, search and rescue; build the operating regulations and assign responsibilities to each members clearly; perfect the mechanism, policies and promulgate the legal documents on the management, command and operation; adjust, supplement, perfect the plans for disaster and disease prevention and control  and build plans for responding effectively. At the same time, propose to Party and State measures for investing and modernising the system of equipment and vehicle for search and rescue, meeting the requirements and mission.

Given the complications of global climate change and the risk of serious incidents and disasters during the process of modernisation and industrialisation of the country, the Military should advise the Party and the State to direct the ministries, sectors and localities to study and give out anticipation and warning about the probable disasters and diseases as foundation for the making of strategies and policies for socio-economic development in combination with the building of projects and plans for responding to the situations. Directly supervise and urge the ministries, sectors and localities to implement the resolution and directives of the Government; attach importance to implementing the measures for enhancing the effectiveness of the National strategy for Civil Defence in the Military, the National Plan for responding to oil spill, the International Convention on Maritime Search and Rescue 1979 (SAR 1979) in the 2019 – 2025 period; strengthen the measures for enhancing SAR capability on the high seas to encourage fishermen to operate and affirm our sovereignty over the seas and islands of the country. The local military commands at all level should consult the party committees and authorities of their levels to have robust and comprehensive renewals of the contents and methods of propagation and education to raise the awareness, attitude and responsibility of the people for the mission of preventing and controlling the incidents, disasters, diseases, and SAR.

Military troops help local people alleviating the consequences of natural calamity in Yen Bai Province (Photo: qdnd.vn)

2. Attach importance to training, exercises to enhance the level and capability for dealing with the disasters and diseases, SAR. Party committees and command of units and agencies in the Military should focus leadership and direction and carry out a number of measures for enhancing the training quality and exercises of responding to the disasters, incidents, diseases, SAR. Focus on making cadres and soldiers fully aware of the importance and necessity to strengthen the mission of preventing and controlling the calamities, disaster, diseases, SAR so that they will raise their sense of responsibility in training and exercises. Actively renew the method of training, increase the time for training, exercises, festivals to enhance the level of command and operation for cadres and commanders at all levels and the implementation ability of forces, and SAR task forces in dealing with complicated situation, such as: super storm, landslide, fire, forest fire, marine incident, etc.

Military units and agencies should promote the core role in training and enhancing the capability in preventing, controlling, responding to and overcoming the incidents, disasters, diseases, and SAR for the ministries, sectors, and localities and the entire community, contributing to minimising the losses in life and property of the people and the State, maintaining political security, social safety and order for the country’s sustainable development. The Navy, the Air Defence and Air Force, the Engineering Corps, the Vietnam Peacekeeping Department, the Military Medicine Department, etc. should actively promote international cooperation in responding to incidents, disasters, diseases, SAR with importance being attached to the enhancement of the effectiveness of training, exercises, humanitarian assistance, etc. to enhance our capability and expertise in the field. Basing on the coordination in the land border search and rescue exercise jointly conducted by Vietnam’s Ministry of National Defence and its Cambodian counterpart in 2019, continue to study and multiply the cooperation in search and rescues exercises with other countries sharing border with us.

3. Continue to promote the core role of the Military in implementing the mission of responding to incidents, calamities, disasters, disease and SAR. Cadres and soldiers of the Military should be aware that this is an important, urgent and regular mission of the entire country and the political task – “a combat task in the peacetime” of the Military. Then, they should uphold their motive, attitude, responsibility and determination during the implementation of the mission. Units and agencies should seriously adhere to the round-the-clock readiness regime; regularly grasp, anticipate, update the situation in an accurate and timely manner; make thorough preparation of the plans in force, vehicle, logistical and technical support to get ready for responding opportunely and effectively to the emerging situations.

Thoroughly implementing the above measures will help the Military fulfill its function as a troop for work, and promote its core role in responding to incidents, calamities, disasters, diseases and SAR, contributing to beautifying the glorious tradition of the heroic Vietnam People’s Army.

Rear Admiral NGUYEN TRONG BINH, Deputy Chief of the General Staff, the Vietnam People's Army

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