PERKASIE, Pa. (AP) _ A group that split from the Vietnam Veterans of America six years ago rejoined the federally chartered organization Monday to give veterans more clout.

With the merger of the United Vietnam Veterans Organization, the VVA now claims 60,000 members.

''The merger gives us a greater voice,'' said Joe Buscher, past national commander of the UVVO. ''It gives us strength.''

David Christian, a co-founder of the VVA who broke away in 1979 to form the UVVO, presented VVA president Bobby Muller with a mailing list of 30,000 names at the headquarters of the Pearl Buck Foundation, a non-profit group that is active on behalf of Amerasian children in Southeast Asia.

Christian formed the VVA with Muller in 1978, then split to form the UVVO in 1979.

The two groups had been talking about a merger since November, Buscher said.

Both organizations lobbied for legislation in Washington, addressing the issues of Agent Orange, jobs for Vietnam veterans and problems of adjustment.