Author Archives: Viet Nam Right Now

Japanese emperor in Vietnam

The visit by the Japanese emperor to Vietnam gives a timely boost for the leadership in Hanoi, at a time when its much vaunted multilateral diplomacy has suffered a series of hard knocks. Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko are to…

Government names officials over Formosa disaster

Vietnam has for the first time named government officials deemed responsible for the environmental disaster off the central coast last year. It identified 11 officials, including a former environment minister, saying they should be disciplined or face an official review….

Exiled journalist tells of abuse in prison

A recently exiled Vietnamese activist has told an international gathering in Geneva that he suffered persistent physical and psychological abuse during his six years in jail. Dang Xuan Dieu said he was periodically shackled, held in solitary confinement, and abused…

Unprovoked assault by police

The police assault on an environmental march on February 14 has highlighted the communist authorities’ sensitivity to what they see as organised protest movements. Heavy handed tactics were used to break up the march by some five hundred Catholic parishioners…

Vietnam remembers China border war

Small groups of people gathered in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to mark the anniversary of the brief border war with China, which is not officially commemorated by Vietnam’s communist government. Large numbers of police were deployed as mourners…

Police assault Formosa protest marchers

Police officers used violence and arrests to halt a march by hundreds of protesters demanding compensation for last year’s environmental disaster, which destroyed fish stocks off the central coast. A Catholic priest, Nguyen Dinh Thuc, led some five hundred parishioners…

Rights campaigner released after three years detention

The prominent activist, Bui Thi Minh Hang, has been released from prison after serving a three year sentence on public order charges. She was greeted by supporters as she emerged from the Gia Trung prison camp in the Central Highlands….

Campaign to free activist

Civil society groups are threatening to step up action against the detention of the human rights campaigner Tran Thi Nga, who has been held in isolation for nearly three weeks. Her arrest has been denounced by rights campaigners at home…

Religious groups vulnerable amid growing repression

The Vietnamese government’s sustained crackdown on dissent is triggering fears amongst religious communities about their own vulnerability to persecution. Some believe that a controversial new religious law passed late last year could leave them exposed to renewed harassment and intimidation…

Vietnam well placed for challenges

Subtle diplomacy, innate caution and rigorous contingency planning have left Vietnam relatively well placed to contend with a brave new world of regional insecurity. Vietnam’s communist leaders have also proved adept at seizing opportunities presented by the shifting sands of…