Category: Politics

China visit raises questions

Vietnam’s precarious diplomatic balancing act continues this week with a six day visit to China by the prime minister, Nguyen Xuan Phuc, his first since taking office earlier this year. He will stress trade and investment during his visit, but…

Call for more foreign pressure on political freedoms

Australia holds its annual human rights dialogue with Vietnam this week amid concern that western countries are easing pressure on Vietnam over its continuing crackdown on government critics. Human Rights Watch called on the Australian delegation to call for significant…

Government attempts to reassure public over Formosa disaster

The government has said that 200,000 people were adversely affected by the toxic leak off the central coast which killed millions of fish earlier this year. It says that it has learned lessons from the disaster and attempted to reassure…

Electoral challenge swept aside

The Communist authorities have approved only two of the one hundred self-nominated candidates that had hoped to stand for seats in the National Assembly election in May. The other 98 independents that sought to challenge the party’s monopoly on power…

Party in a hurry as reshuffle gathers pace

Vietnam is moving quickly to install its reshuffled leadership following a contentious Communist party congress in January. The National Assembly formally elected the veteran party insider, Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, as its first female chairperson. The move comes before elections…

Independent rejected amid uproar

Self nominated candidates aiming for seats in upcoming legislative elections never expected their path to be easy, and so it proved when the first of the independents underwent a mandatory vetting session. His candidature was overwhelmingly rejected at a “public…

Government mulls response to independents

Some one hundred prospective independent candidates met the recent deadline to register for upcoming legislative elections. But as they put their names forward, at the beginning of a daunting vetting process for the May 22 National Assembly election, they were…

Independents face more obstacles

Independent candidates attempting to challenge the Communist party in legislative elections say the authorities have stepped up obstruction and harassment as the deadline for registration approaches. Some say their efforts to put their names forward for the election on May…

Activists rally for May election

A campaign to challenge the Communist party in upcoming legislative elections is gathering momentum despite signs that the police are closely monitoring potential independent candidates. Ten civil society activists in Hanoi have joined the veteran pro-democracy campaigner, Dr Nguyen Quang…

A guide to the National Assembly election

The National Assembly election will take place on May 22. The body has an important constitutional role on paper but has always been seen as more of an ornamentation, manipulated by the Communist party to bolster the legitimacy of its…