January 13, 2003
Vietnam to tighten protest
- The Vietnamese government says it plans to issue a decree to tighten controls
on public demonstrations.
The authorities say the aim is to prevent violence breaking out at some
The chairman of the Government Office, minister Doan Manh Giao, told the
state-run Lao Dong newspaper that a decree would be issued, ahead of a new law
on demonstrations and public gatherings, as the law-making process may take some
It is expected to provide clearer guidance on the rules governing the
organisation and conduct of public gatherings.
There has been an increasing number of demonstrations over land expropriation
and corruption in rural areas.
Mr Giao criticised these protests as abusing democratic rights and urged that
those taking part be severely punished.
Correspondents say the government hopes the decree will help prevent violent
protests such as one last November when eight policemen in the northern province
of Ha Tay were injured in clashes with local demonstrators.