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  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato


    » 01/24/2013, 00.00

    VIETNAM - VATICAN

    For Vietnamese Catholics, govt using the Vatican to cover up religious repression



    The official press in the Communist nation censors meeting between Benedict XVI and Nguyên Phu Trong. Catholic media criticise the country's leaders for using the pope's goodwill and the Holy See's prestige to cover up its violations of human rights. The archbishop of Saigon turns down invitation to ceremony inagurating new, more restrictive rules on religious activities.

    Hanoi (AsiaNews/EdA) - A meeting on Tuesday between Nguyên Phu Trong, secretary general the Communist Party of Vietnam and head of its Central Committee, and Benedict XVI has sparked contrasting reactions among Vietnamese Catholics, whilst the official press in the Asian country has censured the event. In a rare move, the pope received Mr Nguyen on a day when he does not normally receive guests. For many observers, the general secretary is the real power broker in the Communist state,

    For foreign analysts and Vatican experts, the meeting is an important step towards the normalisation of relations. However, critics see the event as an attempt by Vietnamese leaders to take advantage of the pope's prestige to appease international public opinion. In the country itself, Vietnamese Catholics have their doubts about it.  

    The meeting between the pontiff and a key member of Vietnam's leadership comes at a tense moment in the relationship between the local Church and the country's political authorities following the heavy prison sentences inflicted on13 Catholics and the destruction of the Carmelite convent in Hanoi.

    Recent events have left Catholics in a gloomy spirit, as shown by commentaries posted on Vietcatholics News and VRN, the website of Vietnam's Redemptorists. Some commentators and readers accused Communist leaders of "using the good will and prestige of the Holy See" to sweep under the rug "the country's shortcomings in human rights and religious freedom".

    They note past examples of this behaviour. The visit to the Holy See by then Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung on 25 January 2007 was followed by the arrest of Fr Nguyen Van Ly, and the visit by President Nguyen Minh Triet on 11 December 2009 was followed a month later by the demolition of the cross of Dong Chiem parish.

    By contrast, Vietnam's official newspapers did not mention the meeting between the pope and Nguyên Phu Trong, even though they gave wide coverage to the visit by the secretary general and other high Communist leaders to Italy.

    For many Catholics, the goal of establishing diplomatic relations between the Holy See and Vietnam cannot hide the fact that the Church and Catholics are harassed in Vietnam, as evinced by the recent adoption of a new law that increases controls on religions. In fact, the archbishop of Ho Chi Minh City refused to take part in an official ceremony marking the publication of the new decree.

    Last month, the Religious Affairs Bureau had invited representatives of the archdiocese to the ceremony held on 24 December, but Card Pham Minh Man turned down the invitation, saying that he had too many services to attend to on Christmas Eve. In addition, he said that the presence of clergymen to "this kind of ceremony" organised by the government was "unnecessary".

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    See also

    22/01/2013 VATICAN - VIETNAM
    One step closer to diplomatic relations between the Vatican and Hanoi
    Benedict XVI received the Secretary General of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam Nguyen Phu Trong. A statement from the Holy See speaks of "cordial discussions" and “the hope that some pending situations may be resolved and that the existing fruitful cooperation may be strengthened."

    21/08/2014 CHINA-VATICAN
    Chinese experts: cautious openings in relations with Vatican
    Zhuo Xinping, of the Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing says Pope Francis "will improve" relations being "a Jesuit" and "Latin American". Li Xiangping speaks of a "new atmosphere". But Party press do not report on the Pope’s statements or telegrams. A website recalls the "two mountains" to be overcome: diplomatic relations with Taiwan and "interference" in the internal affairs of China. Generic statements of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman.

    20/12/2008 CHINA - VATICAN
    Beijing, Vatican must break with Taiwan and not interfere in domestic affairs
    Celebration of the 50th anniversary of the autonomy of the Chinese church in the area of the appointment and ordination of bishops. Patriotic bishop Ma Yinglin, ordained without the approval of the Holy See, also present. Hopes for dialogue with the Vatican may be vanishing.

    05/05/2008 VIETNAM – VATICAN
    Hanoi waiting for Vatican delegation in the “near future”
    Diplomatic relations would benefit both Vietnam, which is opening up to the world, and the Holy See, which could address issues like religious freedom and fundamental human rights.

    08/05/2008 CHINA - VATICAN
    Chinese websites on the concert of the Beijing orchestra for the pope
    Many sites highlight the words of the pontiff, while others - the official ones - do not quote them at all. Some cite the pope's remarks to Chinese Catholics; all speak of a small step toward diplomatic relations.



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