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Traffic on national highway in Vietnam resumed after locals remove barriers

Friday, April 17, 2015, 16:17 GMT+7

Traffic on National Highway 1A in the south-central province of Binh Thuan returned to normal on Thursday after locals agreed to remove the barricades to block the road in protest at the Vinh Tan 2 thermal power plant causing air pollution.

All obstacles were cleared at 9:00 am yesterday after traffic police and local authorities succeeded in negotiating with the people.

Local residents started blocking the section of the road in Binh Tan Commune in Tuy Phong District on Wednesday, causing trucks to get in line dozens of kilometers long on two ways in the area.

Authorities pledged to force the Vinh Tan 2 plant to stop worsening pollution and clean the atmosphere within ten days.

Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai ordered state-owned power firm Electricity of Vietnam, which supervises the power plant, to stop discharging dust into residential areas.

Le Minh Do, a person in Vinh Phuc Hamlet in Vinh Tan, said that he and hundreds of other local families have suffered from the dusty atmosphere at night for months since the Vinh Tan 2 plant started operating.

In September last year, authorities in Binh Thuan Province put together an inspection team to demand the plant cease polluting the environment and fined it VND1.5 billion (US$70,000), but the situation has not improved yet.

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