Vietnam Security Forces "Burn Down" Christian Villages

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Tuesday, September 13, 2005
By BosNewsLife News Center

HANOI/WASHINGTON (BosNewsLife)-- Vietnamese government forces reportedly burned down homes of Christian villagers for refusing to denounce their faith in Christ amid new concern about human rights violations in the Communist nation, BosNewsLife monitored Monday, September 12.

The influential Washington based human rights watchdog International Christian Concern (ICC) said it had received reports that at least over 10 homes "of tribal Christians in Doi Sau village of Quang Ngai province" were destroyed during the crackdown earlier this year.

ICC claimed the houses of the "Hre tribal Christians were destroyed because they refuse to deny their faith." The victims are members of the formally recognized Evangelical Church of Vietnam, ICC said.

Local officials were quoted as saying that the crackdown was needed as "the Christian religion is America's" religion.


"On Sun. August 21, 2005 at 8:00 A.M." police officials came to the house of a Christian man, Dinh can Hoang, "and said: 'We do not allow any Christians to live here. If you want to stay you must sign this paper to declare that you and your family are renouncing your faith,'" an unidentified local pastor said in a statement released by ICC.

After Hoang refused, police allegedly destroyed his house. "They then told Mr. Hoang that if he recanted his faith, they would rebuild his house. Mr. Hoang again refused, and the authorities then destroyed his animal pens."

Vietnam was named a Country of Particular Concern by the United States for "severe violations" of human rights, which allows Washington to impose sanctions. However "the State Department failed to issue benchmarks or penalties against the Vietnamese government this past spring due to political pressures and assurances from the Vietnamese government that this type of behavior would cease," ICC said.


"Unfortunately, the persecution of tribal Christians has brazenly continued with no discernable change in tenor or volume." The Vietnamese government has denied allegations of wide spread human rights abuses and has accused the United States of selective bias.

It has said the party and state "are committed to freedom of religious practice," and that they only prosecute those "taking unfair advantage of religion ..."

ICC has urged its supporters to contact "elected representatives" or The Embassy of Vietnam in located at 1233 20th St. NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20036. The e-mail address is (With BosNewsLife Research, Stefan J. Bos and reports from Vietnam).

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