Long Tan - Smartraveller's lastest Advice, 19 August 2016
Vietnamese authorities will allow access to the Long Tan Cross site on 19 August with strict conditions. The Australian Ambassador, Consul-General and Consular staff are currently at the Long Tan Cross site. Our advice remains to stagger arrivals and to travel to the site in small groups. We will provide updates should access conditions change. The level of the advice has not changed. We continue to advise Australians to exercise normal safety precautions in Vietnam. Smartraveller.gov.au: Travel advice for Vietnam
Long Tan - Smartraveller's lastest Advice, 18 August 2016
Vietnamese authorities will allow access to the Long Tan Cross site on 18 August with strict conditions. This includes travel in small groups (staggered throughout the day), no media presence and other long-standing requirements. Read our full advice and contact your tour operator for further information. The commemoration ceremony at 15:30 remains cancelled. The level of the advice has not changed. We continue to advise Australians to exercise normal safety precautions in Vietnam.
Cancellation of the 50th Anniversary Service at Long Tan
The Vietnamese authorities have cancelled the commemoration ceremony for Vietnam Veteran's Day at the Long Tan Cross site at 15:30 on 18 August. We understand that access to the site is currently blocked, which may continue on 18 August. Given ongoing uncertainty about access, we advise Australians not to travel to the site. Follow local instructions and contact your tour operator about any changes in plans. The level of the advice has not changed. We continue to advise Australians to exercise normal safety precautions in Vietnam.
Joint statement from the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Julie Bishop MP and the Minister for Veterans' Affairs, the Hon Dan Tehan MP
The Vietnamese Government has advised the Australian Government that it will not permit the ceremony to commemorate Vietnam Veteran’s Day at the Long Tan cross site at 15:30 on 18 August to proceed.
The Government is deeply disappointed at this decision, and the manner in which it was taken, so close to the commemoration service taking place.
Australia’s Ambassador has registered our deep concerns with the Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs. The Government is seeking urgent calls with Vietnamese counterparts at the most senior levels to register our concerns.
Australia has been working closely with Vietnamese authorities for 18 months to prepare for this event. Memorial events have been held at Long Tan since 1989.
Australian veterans and their families had planned to attend a ceremony at Long Tan marked by mutual respect to remember and honour the sacrifice of those lost in the Vietnam War from both sides. For many veterans, this would have been their first visit to Vietnam since the war.
For the more than one thousand Australians who have travelled to Vietnam to attend the 50th anniversary memorial service this is bitterly disappointing news.
The Vietnam Veterans’ Association and the Vietnam Veterans’ Federation have been briefed by the Government on the decision taken by the Vietnamese Government.
The Smartraveller website has been updated. Travellers requiring emergency consular assistance should contact the 24 hour consular line on +61 2 6261 3305.
Foreign Minister’s Office: Rachel Obradovic 0478 488 874
Veterans’ Affairs Minister’s Officer: Byron Vale 0428 262 894
Visits to the Long Tan Cross
Please click on this link to find related information about visits to the Long Tan Cross: http://hcmc.vietnam.embassy.gov.au/hchi/LongTanCross.html