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US House commission holds hearing on religious persecution in Vietnam

Catholic World News - April 04, 2014

The United States House of Representatives’ Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission has conducted a hearing on religious persecution in Vietnam.

The bipartisan commission, once known as the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, has the mission of promoting human rights.

Among those on the witness list at the March 26 hearing was Father Phan Van Loi, editor-in-chief of “Freedom of Speech” and co-founder of the Association of Former Vietnamese Prisoners of Conscience.

“Vietnam is an authoritarian state ruled by the Communist Party,” said Eric Schwarz, a member of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom, in his testimony.

“The Vietnamese government exerts control over religious activities through law and administrative oversight, severely restricts independent religious practice, and represses individuals and religious groups it views as challenging its authority.”

“Ethnic minority converts to Protestantism and Catholicism, in particular, face discrimination, intimidation, and pressure to renounce their faith,” he added.

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  • Posted by: [email protected] - Apr. 05, 2014 1:57 PM ET USA

    If this wasn't laughable I would fall over in wonder. We have a U.S. Congressional Commission investigating religious persecution in Vietnam. They badly need to review what is going on in the United States- the land of the free and home of the brave. This Commission is a waste of money and should be shut down.

  • Posted by: unum - Apr. 05, 2014 9:08 AM ET USA

    Perhaps Rep. Lantos can also conduct a hearing on religious persecution in the United States by the Obama administration and others.

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