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Vietnam’s Da Lat City overcrowded with vehicles of Tet goers

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All major streets in Vietnam’s tourist highland city of Da Lat were packed with vehicles on Thursday, the last day of the seven-day Tet break (2023 Lunar New Year) as so many personal cars and passenger vans traveled to the city.

The traffic jams were serious as so many vehicles entered the city center even though the number of visitors during this Tet was not too big compared to last year’s edition, as noted by Tien Phong (Youth) newspaper reporters.

Tran Manh Son, a visitor from Ho Chi Minh City, told Tien Phong that it took him nearly an hour to drive his family in his car for a distance of about three kilometers from a hotel on Trieu Viet Vuong Street to Tran Hung Dao Street.

“Cars and larger vehicles were overloaded everywhere, so many cars inched a bit, as slow as walking,” Son said.   

The area of Xuan Huong Lake was constantly congested from 8:30 am to 11:00 am, and the same situation was recorded in many other sites, including the city’s flower garden, the Ong Dao Bridge, the Da Lat market roundabout, and the intersection of Dinh Tien Hoang, Tran Quoc Toan, and Bui Thi Xuan Streets.

Police officers were deployed on many streets to regulate traffic and guide vehicles to change their directions to avoid entering the ways leading to traffic jam sites.

Vinh, the driver of a 50-seater long-haul bus, said he picked up passengers on Hoang Van Thu Street but could not drive them to Domaine Church on Ngo Quyen Street because of the serious congestion that had lasted for more than an hour.

He added his passengers wanted to change their destination to avoid the jam but he failed to turn the bus to any other directions to get out of the congested site.

“Now I can do nothing but wait for the congestion to ease,” Vinh said.

Nguyen Hung Minh, a long-haul bus driver, said he drove passengers to Da Lat on Tuesday and has since witnessed such traffic jams at the city’s gateways.

The Da Lat administration blamed the serious congestion on personal cars and long-haul buses that had come to this tourist destination, which is the capital city of Lam Dong Province in the Central Highlands region. 

Such traffic jams have partly affected the quality of tours to Da Lat, local authorities said.

A traffic police officer is seen asking a car driver to change his direction to avoid entering the ongoing congestion site in Da Lat. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

A traffic police officer is seen asking a car driver to change his direction to avoid entering the ongoing congestion site in Da Lat. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

This image shows many personal cars and long-haul buses in a traffic jam in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

This image shows many personal cars and long-haul buses in a traffic jam in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

Many young people are seen still joyful despite being stuck in traffic congestion on a street in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

Many young people are seen still joyful despite being stuck in traffic congestion on a street in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

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All major streets in Vietnam’s tourist highland city of Da Lat were packed with vehicles on Thursday, the last day of the seven-day Tet break (2023 Lunar New Year) as so many personal cars and passenger vans traveled to the city.

The traffic jams were serious as so many vehicles entered the city center even though the number of visitors during this Tet was not too big compared to last year’s edition, as noted by Tien Phong (Youth) newspaper reporters.

Tran Manh Son, a visitor from Ho Chi Minh City, told Tien Phong that it took him nearly an hour to drive his family in his car for a distance of about three kilometers from a hotel on Trieu Viet Vuong Street to Tran Hung Dao Street.

“Cars and larger vehicles were overloaded everywhere, so many cars inched a bit, as slow as walking,” Son said.   

The area of Xuan Huong Lake was constantly congested from 8:30 am to 11:00 am, and the same situation was recorded in many other sites, including the city’s flower garden, the Ong Dao Bridge, the Da Lat market roundabout, and the intersection of Dinh Tien Hoang, Tran Quoc Toan, and Bui Thi Xuan Streets.

Police officers were deployed on many streets to regulate traffic and guide vehicles to change their directions to avoid entering the ways leading to traffic jam sites.

Vinh, the driver of a 50-seater long-haul bus, said he picked up passengers on Hoang Van Thu Street but could not drive them to Domaine Church on Ngo Quyen Street because of the serious congestion that had lasted for more than an hour.

He added his passengers wanted to change their destination to avoid the jam but he failed to turn the bus to any other directions to get out of the congested site.

“Now I can do nothing but wait for the congestion to ease,” Vinh said.

Nguyen Hung Minh, a long-haul bus driver, said he drove passengers to Da Lat on Tuesday and has since witnessed such traffic jams at the city’s gateways.

The Da Lat administration blamed the serious congestion on personal cars and long-haul buses that had come to this tourist destination, which is the capital city of Lam Dong Province in the Central Highlands region. 

Such traffic jams have partly affected the quality of tours to Da Lat, local authorities said.

A traffic police officer is seen asking a car driver to change his direction to avoid entering the ongoing congestion site in Da Lat. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

A traffic police officer is seen asking a car driver to change his direction to avoid entering the ongoing congestion site in Da Lat. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

This image shows many personal cars and long-haul buses in a traffic jam in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

This image shows many personal cars and long-haul buses in a traffic jam in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

Many young people are seen still joyful despite being stuck in traffic congestion on a street in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

Many young people are seen still joyful despite being stuck in traffic congestion on a street in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230127/vietnams-da-lat-city-overcrowded-with-vehicles-of-tet-goers/71148.html

Society

Centuries-old trees illegally cut down in Vietnam protection forest

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Many centuries-old trees in a protection forest in Cam Village of Van Canh District, located in Binh Dinh Province, south-central Vietnam were chopped down unlawfully, Luong Dinh Tien, chairman of the district People’s Committee said on Monday.

Situated in Cam Village in Canh Lien Commune sharing a borderline with Tan Xuan Commune in Tay Son District, the protection forest is under the management of the Van Canh protection forest management board.

Deforested areas were mainly found near the Co, Chuoi, Da Trai and Dong Mit Mai streams.

Stretching an area from Co Stream to Da Trai Stream, 10 trees with a diameter of 0.3-1 meter were sawn down, while five other centuries-old trees have been felled at Chuoi Stream, which is part of Co Stream.

Given the scene of logging cases, loggers used saws to chop down trees and sectioned them off to easily carry them out of the forest.

Many big trees are knocked down. Photo: Van Dinh/ Tien Phong

Many big trees are knocked down. Photo: Van Dinh / Tien Phong

A ranger, who works at a ranger station run by the Van Canh protection forest management board, confirmed the ongoing deforestation, adding that the station sent rangers to the scene of logging cases for inspection.

Y Ka Lach, a forest protector at the station, said that several loggers had been caught red-handed deforesting.

The station frequently calls on residents to join hands with officers to protect the forest, but several individuals show no cooperation and threaten to kill rangers after drinking.

The deforested area remains a hotspot as there are many big trees left, said Nguyen Thi To Tran, deputy head of the Binh Dinh Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

“Many rangers are at the scene to check the situation,” Tran said.

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Many centuries-old trees in a protection forest in Cam Village of Van Canh District, located in Binh Dinh Province, south-central Vietnam were chopped down unlawfully, Luong Dinh Tien, chairman of the district People’s Committee said on Monday.

Situated in Cam Village in Canh Lien Commune sharing a borderline with Tan Xuan Commune in Tay Son District, the protection forest is under the management of the Van Canh protection forest management board.

Deforested areas were mainly found near the Co, Chuoi, Da Trai and Dong Mit Mai streams.

Stretching an area from Co Stream to Da Trai Stream, 10 trees with a diameter of 0.3-1 meter were sawn down, while five other centuries-old trees have been felled at Chuoi Stream, which is part of Co Stream.

Given the scene of logging cases, loggers used saws to chop down trees and sectioned them off to easily carry them out of the forest.

Many big trees are knocked down. Photo: Van Dinh/ Tien Phong

Many big trees are knocked down. Photo: Van Dinh / Tien Phong

A ranger, who works at a ranger station run by the Van Canh protection forest management board, confirmed the ongoing deforestation, adding that the station sent rangers to the scene of logging cases for inspection.

Y Ka Lach, a forest protector at the station, said that several loggers had been caught red-handed deforesting.

The station frequently calls on residents to join hands with officers to protect the forest, but several individuals show no cooperation and threaten to kill rangers after drinking.

The deforested area remains a hotspot as there are many big trees left, said Nguyen Thi To Tran, deputy head of the Binh Dinh Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

“Many rangers are at the scene to check the situation,” Tran said.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230322/centuriesold-trees-illegally-cut-down-in-vietnam-protection-forest/72201.html

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100 restaurants, coffee shops in downtown Ho Chi Minh offer gratis toilet service

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The District 1 People’s Committee in Ho Chi Minh City has publicized a list of 100 restaurants and coffee shops that offer free toilet service to residents and tourists.

The district also selected five venues to build public restrooms, which was announced at a meeting between Nguyen Van Nen, secretary of the Ho Chi Minh City Party Committee, and the District 1 People’s Committee on public bathroom systems on Sunday.

Speaking at the meeting, District 1 chairman Le Duc Thanh said that the district has 18 public restroom points at 13 public places, including four markets, seven parks, one bus stop, and a residential area.

The district is home to multiple restaurants, hotels, and shopping centers, making life easier to call on these facilities to offer free-of-charge toilet services to residents and tourists, Thanh said, adding that the district finds it hard to build new public bathrooms as the land bank in District 1 is now running out.

Though the district has prodded businesses and service providers to allow free access to their bathrooms since 2017, many toilets fail to meet safe sanitation standards. Furthermore, people remain hesitant to use free restrooms.

As many as 100 restaurants and coffee shops have put up ‘free-of-charge toilet’ signs, said Thanh.

The District 1 People’s Committee has proposed the Ho Chi Minh People’s Committee give the nod for its plan to build five makeshift bathrooms funded by the city’s budget.

The five projected public restrooms will lie on Nguyen Hue, Le Duan, Hai Ba Trung, and Nguyen Trung Truc Streets.

It is a big headache to find a site for new public toilets. 

The district has proposed the city allow it to use part of some land lots set aside for projects but the plans to construct public bathrooms remain on paper, said vice-chairman of District 1 Vu Nguyen Quang Vinh.

Funding is the next challenge.

Each public toilet is expected to cost some VND550 million (US$23,330), while the monthly operation cost for it will be at least VND36 million ($1,520).

As such, the district needs to earmark some VND2.5 billion ($106,000) in total for building the five new restrooms. 

When working with many investors who are keen on bathroom construction, they expect the district authorities to pledge the capital recoupment period, aside from their advertising and business operations.

Ho Chi Minh City is facing a severe shortage of public restrooms, as the city has a mere 200 public restrooms.

The city is ranked 67th among 69 tourism cities in the world with poor public toilets, Nikkei Asia cited rankings by QS Supplies, a toilet trading company, in a report released in early February.

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The District 1 People’s Committee in Ho Chi Minh City has publicized a list of 100 restaurants and coffee shops that offer free toilet service to residents and tourists.

The district also selected five venues to build public restrooms, which was announced at a meeting between Nguyen Van Nen, secretary of the Ho Chi Minh City Party Committee, and the District 1 People’s Committee on public bathroom systems on Sunday.

Speaking at the meeting, District 1 chairman Le Duc Thanh said that the district has 18 public restroom points at 13 public places, including four markets, seven parks, one bus stop, and a residential area.

The district is home to multiple restaurants, hotels, and shopping centers, making life easier to call on these facilities to offer free-of-charge toilet services to residents and tourists, Thanh said, adding that the district finds it hard to build new public bathrooms as the land bank in District 1 is now running out.

Though the district has prodded businesses and service providers to allow free access to their bathrooms since 2017, many toilets fail to meet safe sanitation standards. Furthermore, people remain hesitant to use free restrooms.

As many as 100 restaurants and coffee shops have put up ‘free-of-charge toilet’ signs, said Thanh.

The District 1 People’s Committee has proposed the Ho Chi Minh People’s Committee give the nod for its plan to build five makeshift bathrooms funded by the city’s budget.

The five projected public restrooms will lie on Nguyen Hue, Le Duan, Hai Ba Trung, and Nguyen Trung Truc Streets.

It is a big headache to find a site for new public toilets. 

The district has proposed the city allow it to use part of some land lots set aside for projects but the plans to construct public bathrooms remain on paper, said vice-chairman of District 1 Vu Nguyen Quang Vinh.

Funding is the next challenge.

Each public toilet is expected to cost some VND550 million (US$23,330), while the monthly operation cost for it will be at least VND36 million ($1,520).

As such, the district needs to earmark some VND2.5 billion ($106,000) in total for building the five new restrooms. 

When working with many investors who are keen on bathroom construction, they expect the district authorities to pledge the capital recoupment period, aside from their advertising and business operations.

Ho Chi Minh City is facing a severe shortage of public restrooms, as the city has a mere 200 public restrooms.

The city is ranked 67th among 69 tourism cities in the world with poor public toilets, Nikkei Asia cited rankings by QS Supplies, a toilet trading company, in a report released in early February.

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to get the latest news about Vietnam!

Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230321/100-restaurants-coffee-shops-in-downtown-ho-chi-minh-offer-gratis-toilet-service/72198.html

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Vietnam seizes 7 tonnes of smuggled ivory

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The police and customs forces in Hai Phong City, northern Vietnam on Monday morning confiscated around seven metric tons of ivory smuggled from Africa.

The tusks were hidden in shipping containers that had been declared to contain peanuts. 

These containers arrived at Nam Dinh Vu Port in Hai Phong from Angola, transiting in Singapore, the General Department of Vietnam Customs said on the same day.

The name of the cargo was described in an uncommon language, adding that the information linked to the recipient was found to be incorrect. 

This is a new and sophisticated illegal practice being adopted in order to evade authorities’ detection, the forces said.

Also, this is the largest seizure of smuggled wildlife items in Hai Phong so far.

The seized tusks are included in CITES’ Appendix I, which lists the world’s most endangered flora and fauna. 

CITES, or the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, is a global agreement among governments to regulate or ban international trade in species under threat, according to the World Wildlife Fund.

The General Department of Vietnam Customs is working with relevant agencies to further investigate the case.

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The police and customs forces in Hai Phong City, northern Vietnam on Monday morning confiscated around seven metric tons of ivory smuggled from Africa.

The tusks were hidden in shipping containers that had been declared to contain peanuts. 

These containers arrived at Nam Dinh Vu Port in Hai Phong from Angola, transiting in Singapore, the General Department of Vietnam Customs said on the same day.

The name of the cargo was described in an uncommon language, adding that the information linked to the recipient was found to be incorrect. 

This is a new and sophisticated illegal practice being adopted in order to evade authorities’ detection, the forces said.

Also, this is the largest seizure of smuggled wildlife items in Hai Phong so far.

The seized tusks are included in CITES’ Appendix I, which lists the world’s most endangered flora and fauna. 

CITES, or the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, is a global agreement among governments to regulate or ban international trade in species under threat, according to the World Wildlife Fund.

The General Department of Vietnam Customs is working with relevant agencies to further investigate the case.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230321/vietnam-seizes-7-tonnes-of-smuggled-ivory/72191.html

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