30 July, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile






mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 08/06/2012
VIETNAM
"Prehistoric" vs "modern" communism: arrests for Catholics and activists, marriage for gays
by Nguyen Hung
Fifty anti-China demonstrators are arrested. Gay and lesbian demonstration is allowed. Seventeen young Catholics and one Protestant have been arrested for defending freedom of worship. Justice minister pledges to recognise gay marriage.

Hanoi (AsiaNews) - Vietnam's communism is in some respect "pre-historic" even if it is trying to modernise to remain in power, this according to experts who spoke about recent events in the capital.

About a hundred members of Vietnam's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered community (pictured) held their first parade in the streets of Hanoi. Holding balloons and riding bicycles, they called for greater tolerance in society.

Although unauthorised, the demonstration went off without a hitch with participants unmolested by either bystanders or police. A protest against Chinese hegemony in the South China Sea ended instead in the arrest of 50 activists.

"For some reason, the government thinks that political protesters are more dangerous than gay people," said Nguyen Phuc Tiet, a young demonstrator.

It appears in fact that the government is more open to homosexuality. Last month, Justice Minister Ha Hung Cuong said that Vietnam should reconsider its laws and recognise marriage between people of the same sex. If this happened, Vietnam would be the first Asian country to legalise gay marriage.

Coming from the Vietnamese Communist party, such "modernity" can be explained by its desire to be accepted in the world economy, especially its main partner, the United States. But some suspect that such "modernity" is also a way to hide some of the dictatorship's "prehistoric" aspects, such arresting anti-China and pro-democracy activists and bloggers.

In one respect, the government's attitude is even more "prehistoric," namely religion. In fact, religious groups are kept under tight government leash-this is especially true for Catholics.

Sources told AsiaNews that in Con Cuông (Vinh), the regime continues to harass Catholics, guilty of practicing their faith, in various ways, including press campaigns and physical attacks like stone throwing.

Since July 2011, the authorities arrested without charges 17 young Catholics and a Protestant. In response, Fr Antony, a Redemptorist clergyman in Saigon, talked to over 3,000 people, asking them to "pray for Catholics, unfairly arrested and victimised by the regime, and for our nation."

What many young believers find hard to believe is the fact that "government is so eager to crack down on Catholics and yet unwilling to protect Vietnam's sovereignty vis-à-vis China."

"Public opinion in Vietnam is shocked by the inanity of the country's leaders, following China's decision to place a garrison and its administration in Sansha, in the Paracels."

"The government of Vietnam should defend our nation," said Fr Joseph, another Redemptorist. "Instead, it just sent a diplomatic note."


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
08/22/2011 VIETNAM – CHINA
Hanoi cracks down on protests, 50 anti-Chinese demonstrators arrested over South China Sea
by Thanh Thuy
05/16/2013 VIETNAM - CHINA
Long An: Vietnamese activists jailed for 'anti-Chinese protest'
06/17/2011 CHINA
South China Sea: Beijing sending patrol ship
07/18/2011 VIETNAM – CHINA
South China Sea: Vietnam wants ASEAN as forum for negotiations
by Thanh Thuy
06/04/2011 VIETNAM - CHINA - PHILIPPINES
Vietnamese take to streets against Beijing’s incursions in the South China Sea

Editor's choices
ISRAEL - IRAN
After nuclear deal, Israel ought to become Iran’s best ally
by Uri AvneryThis is the thesis of Uri Avnery, leader of Gush Shalom, a major supporter of peace between Israelis and Palestinians. According to the great statesman and peace activist, Iran only wants to be a regional power in the Islamic world, able to trade with everyone, inspired by a sophisticated experience that goes back thousands of years. Iran, which faces backward-looking Gulf monarchies and emirates, could be a great ally against Daesh. Meanwhile in Israel Netanyahu, politicians and the media continue to blunder.
ASIA
PIME in China: new men in new facilities
by Piero GheddoThe mission in China is possible. It should focus more on educational facilities. Old and new martyrs offer a role model. Here is a commented review of a letter the PIME superior general sent out to his confreres after a trip to China.
EUROPE – ISLAM
For Nîmes imam, the Islamic State group kills Christians, but also threatens Islam in Europe
by Hocine Drouiche*Political Islam is becoming a "thuggish Islam," one that values ​​lying, hate, and enmity. Christians and the West are its enemies. However, Islam has had periods in which dialogue, reason, encounter, assimilation were held in high esteem. The belligerent Islam that fascinates so many young people is the result of myths and manipulations and causes Islamophobia. It is time to create and develop Europe’s own Islam, one that guarantees freedom of conscience and coexistence with Christians and Jews. Solving the Palestinian problem requires dialogue.

Dossier

Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.