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35 soldiers found in Vietnam War mass grave

Searchers discovered a mass grave of 35 North Vietnamese soldiers killed at a military airport during Vietnam's 1968 Tet offencive, a military official said today.

world Updated: Apr 05, 2009 11:27 IST

Searchers discovered a mass grave of 35 North Vietnamese soldiers killed at a military airport during Vietnam's 1968 Tet offencive, a military official said on Sunday.

The remains were discovered yesterday in a search of the former Vinh Long army airport, said the head of the provincial military command's political department, Vo Hieu Hoa.

"We had the names and addresses of all of them, but could not identify who is who," Hoa told AFP, adding that the search for the 35 began in the 1980s.

He said several more bodies of soldiers killed by American troops when they tried to occupy the airport had still to be found.

"We will continue our search for more bodies although it is not easy as we don't often receive the correct information on the exact locations of the graves," he said.

The Tet offencive began late January 1968 when around 70,000 communist fighters attacked targets in more than 100 towns and cities in South Vietnam.

The attacks violated a truce marking the traditional Lunar New Year holiday, catching US and South Vietnamese forces off guard.

Although tens of thousands of communist soldiers were killed, the Tet offencive proved to be a psychological victory that strengthened the US anti-war movement.

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