The Hon. Samuel D. Brownback
United States Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom
Since Vietnam joined the United Nations and promised to implement the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and relevant international covenants, its Communist regime has continued to violate those values.
These violations are well known to the people of Vietnam, in and outside of Vietnam, to the international community, and to the UN Security Council. There have been many protests, but the Vietnamese Communist regime has consistently ignored them, and has continued to violate those values – more and more each passing day.
In general, the Communist regime has harassed the religious leaders and followers who do not accept the leadership it props up.
In particular, with respect to Caodaism, after taking over South Vietnam, the Communist regime abolished Caodaism’s five-level administrative body – from the headquarters to the local level – in favor of a newly established administrative authority under the directions and control of the government. The government then arrests and imprisons the true leaders and followers who do not obey this new authority. All property and assets of the Cao Dai Church, including its Great Divine Temple as well as local temples and holy houses, were wrongly confiscated and given to this new authority. All religious activities of the true believers are prohibited and abolished by violent means, including the use of gangsters and weapons.
For example, on July 11, 2018, public security members beat up Dignitary Hua Phi in his own house in Lam Dong Province then attempted to burn down the house. They had attempted so many times in the past. Most recently, on March 7, 2019, when Dignitary Hua Phi became ill with high blood pressure, public securities members surrounded the house, stopping him from leaving it and prohibiting health providers to come to his aid. Such actions make Dignitary Hua’s conditions extremely serious. And in that evening, while Dignitary Hua was on his sick bed, public security personnel attempted to serve him with a Notice to appear at the local police headquarters to be interviewed on his alleged involvement in the anti-government movement of the Coalition of Independent and Democratic Vietnam.”
In the interest of time, I am just telling 1 example of many, many violations blatantly committed by the Vietnamese Communist regime. I thank you for listening.
Ha Vu Bang
Caodaist California Branch