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Almost four decades since the Vietnam War, the country continues to struggle with religious freedom, censorship and human trafficking, according to nearly 3,000 WikiLeaks cables released August 25 from Hanoi Embassy.A cable from 2010 reveals that human trafficking has increased in the country by 5.3% this year with an estimated 60% of victims ending up in China.
In a January 2010 meeting, a Vietnamese official stated that there were more than 4,000 human trafficking victims reported in the past five years.
Cables also revealed:
- Prominent political writer, Tran Khai Thanh Thuy, said her arrest in October 2009 was “arranged” when she was convicted of throwing bricks and sticks at two men. Thuy argued she acted to defend her husband “who was under attack” by the men. The writer was a recipient of Human Rights Watch’s Hellman/Hammett Award in 2007.
- Suspicions that the country blocked its only non-GVN managed news service — BBC Vietnamese.
- Vietnamese officials in Hanoi and Central Highlands forced monks and nuns living in Plum Village to evacuate their current homes to seek residence at local Vietnamese Buddhist Sangha in 2009. A chief abbott said he felt he had “no choice” but to sign with “pressure from police, local authorities and an angry mob.”
- “Con Lai Mi,” or “Mixed Blood Americans” are finally being accepted within their own culture after being ostracized for many years after the War. Many were forced to relocate to “New Economic Zones,” living under harsh conditions.
- Canadian Ambassador said they would offer Father Nguyen Van Ly a home in Canada if GVN released him. The religious man has spent about 17 years in and out of prison for publicly criticising the government. Ly was returned to prison in July 2011 after a year-long medical leave causing great concerns among many U.S. Congress members.