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Vietnam’s defense ministry has punished more than 40 military officers including two high-ranking ones for four deadly military aircraft crashes this year.
Major General Nguyen Minh Hoang, a spokesman of the military, said at a meeting on Wednesday that the four crashes between June and October caused "serious losses" to the Air Force.
According to previous reports, 14 military members and one civilian died in the four incidents.
Details of the punishment and the identities of the officers were not revealed.
Investigation by the Ministry of National Defense found safety problems and that officers have failed to draw lessons despite continuous crashes.
“Flight safety checks are still conducted in simple and untimely ways,” Hoang said, who also questioned training.
One Vietnam Air Force fighter jet crashed on a training mission off the north-central coast on June 14. One of the two pilots died.
During the search for the jet and its pilots, a Coast Guard airplane crashed in bad weather two days later and all nine crew members on board were dead.
On August 26, an Air Force jet trainer crashed in Phu Yen Province in the south central minutes after take-off after the engine broke down, killing one crew member and a civilian on the ground.
On October 18, a military captain and two sub-lieutenants were killed as a helicopter crashed during a training session in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau.
The latest incident involved a commercial helicopter, and the military is still working with the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam to investigate the cause.
The ministry is going to inspect all aircraft, many of which are old, and review training activities conducted by units under the Air Force.
Hoang said the ministry has plans to send pilots overseas for further training as a part of a modernization plan.
There were also several fatal crashes in 2014 and 2015.
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