newsstand
 
Today:
  • Vietnam: Clinton Should Spotlight Internet Freedom , -- posted on 31 Aug 2012
  • Vietnamese Catholics demonstrate despite government threats, -- posted on 19 Jul 2012
  • Blogger Slashed by Thugs, -- posted on 14 Jul 2012
  • Vietnam: Free Catholic Activists, -- posted on 23 May 2012
  • Vietnamese Blogger Dieu Cay, -- posted on 21 Apr 2012
  • Michael Brehl, C.Ss.R.: “We admire the commitment of the Province of Vietnam..., -- posted on 18 Nov 2011
  • Press Release: On the abuse of social media system, police and gangs by the communist government of Vietnam against Thai Ha Parish, -- posted on 15 Nov 2011
  • Following the Lord on the path of the Cross, renews our way of thinking, says Pope, -- posted on 31 Aug 2011
  • Cau Ram: thousands of Catholics protest against property seizures, -- posted on 16 Aug 2011
  • Reporters Without Borders: French-vietnamese blogger sentenced to three years in prison, -- posted on 15 Aug 2011
  • Public frustrations soar in Vietnam, -- posted on 05 Aug 2011
  • AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL URGENT ACTION VIETNAMESE BLOGGER "LOSES ARM" IN PRISON , -- posted on 02 Aug 2011
  • Return of Father Nguyen Van Ly to Prison, -- posted on 29 Jul 2011
  • Vietnam: U.S. Ships to Join Exercises, Raising Objections from China, -- posted on 20 Jul 2011
  • Hanoi archbishop protests convent demolition, -- posted on 26 May 2011
  • Vietnam unleashes wave of repression against Hmong Christians, at least 49 dead, -- posted on 16 May 2011
  • Amnesty International Annual Report 2011, -- posted on 16 May 2011
  • Vietnam: 14 Die as Troops Converge On Hmong, -- posted on 10 May 2011
  • Soldiers sent to free kidnapped officials in Vietnam, -- posted on 07 May 2011
  • Vietnam: Ethnic Hmong 'in mass protest in Dien Bien', -- posted on 07 May 2011
  • Ethnic Hmong hold mass protest in Vietnam, -- posted on 07 May 2011
  • Vietnam quashes rare Hmong uprising, -- posted on 07 May 2011
  • Vietnamese Catholics beaten, arrested for supporting human rights lawyer, -- posted on 04 May 2011
  • My revived hatred of communism, -- posted on 18 Feb 2011
  • Vietnamese Catholics bury aborted fetuses, -- posted on 29 Dec 2010
  • More trouble for Vietnam's Redemptorists: monastery turned into state office, -- posted on 26 Dec 2010
  • New wave of harassment against Redemptorists in Vietnam, -- posted on 17 Dec 2010
  • Vietnam's land management system prone to corruption, experts say, -- posted on 29 Nov 2010
  • KonTum Bishop committed to bring The Words to remote regions despite local scrutiny , -- posted on 18 Nov 2010
  • Vietnam youths go online to promote chastity, -- posted on 18 Nov 2010
  • Congressman criticizes conviction of six Catholics in Vietnam as ‘sham court’, -- posted on 04 Nov 2010
  • Heavy sentences against faithful of Con Dau - Catholics protest injustice , -- posted on 27 Oct 2010
  • Former enemies US, Vietnam now military mates , -- posted on 09 Aug 2010
  • Human Rights Watch honours 6 Vietnamese dissident writers who faced political persecution, -- posted on 06 Aug 2010
  • In Visit, Clinton Criticizes Vietnam on Rights, -- posted on 24 Jul 2010
  • Vinh Long nuns keep fighting for justice and truth , -- posted on 15 Jul 2010
  • Vatican moves upset Viet local Church leaders , -- posted on 06 Jul 2010
  • Pope to appoint groundbreaking representative to Vietnam, -- posted on 06 Jul 2010
  • Vietnam: Provincial government tightens its grip on freedom of religion , -- posted on 23 Jun 2010
  • Vietnam, US hold security, defense dialogue, -- posted on 09 Jun 2010

    
    click here for MORE CARTOONS

    Bookmark and Share
  • Vietnam Local Church Wants Archbishop Understood Correctly In Land Dispute
    BANGKOK (UCAN) -- Priests in Ha Noi have asked state-run media to stop spreading false information against their leader and Catholics in general.

    Archbishop Joseph Ngo Quang Kiet of Ha Noi and his priests met Ha Noi city authorities on the morning of Sept. 20. Two state-run television channels later quoted Archbishop Kiet as having said at the meeting: "We have traveled to many foreign countries. We feel ashamed of our Vietnamese passports."

    In those reports, local authorities accused the archbishop of not taking pride in the nation and wondered whether Catholics could trust him. They also accused the Church leader of making illegitimate requests for the return of Church properties.

    The meeting came one day after government authorities on Sept. 19 suddenly began building a flower garden on the grounds of the former apostolic nunciature and began to repair the building for use as a library.

    Hundreds of local policemen, mobile units and plainclothes security officials have erected iron barriers blocking off the former nunciature. Some security officials also stand guard along the street, while others patrol the area with guard dogs.

    Workers have been working all day and night at the site, and local media reported the project would be finished this week.

    In a letter dated Sept. 21 to Vietnam Television, Ha Noi-based Radio and Television, and city officials, Father Anthony Pham Van Dung, on behalf of local priests, said the two channels had broadcast "untrue reports" on Archbishop Kiet's statement at the meeting. Local newspapers also quoted from the television reports.

    Archbishop Kiet's statement "was truncated and separated from its context by you so as to.. . slander the archbishop and comment about him in an offensive way," Father Dung noted.

    The Vietnamese Catholic bishops' website posted the full text of Archbishop Kiet's statement. In it the remarks cited in the news reports read: "We travel to many foreign countries. We feel ashamed of our Vietnamese passports, which are always scrutinized by others. We are very sad. We wish our country would become a power... . Japanese go everywhere and no one examines their passports [in this way]. We also wish our country would develop.. . so that we can be respected by others in places we visit."

    Father Dung said Archbishop Kiet's statement shows he wants to have dialogue, to build national solidarity and develop the country to become as strong as other countries. Statements from Archbishop Kiet and priests at the meeting were documented on audio and video by authorities as well as Church representatives, he added.

    Father Dung said local priests suggested local media officials should apologize in writing to Archbishop Kiet and the Catholic community, and retract their false reports. Local priests also asked local media to stop publishing wrong and distorted information about the archbishop, as "you have done so far" in the nunciature dispute.

    Archbishop Kiet told government authorities at the meeting that they have not presented the local Church with any legal papers saying they confiscated the nunciature or that they gave it over to a government body.

    The Church leader said his archdiocese petitioned the government 15 times and the Vietnamese bishops also sent many petitions to authorities for the building's return. "Our aspirations have never been fulfilled," he noted.

    Archbishop Kiet insisted the local Church does not cause the government trouble but "raises the voice of justice."

    The Church has not asked for the return of 95 facilities confiscated in the past by local governments that are now used for the people's benefit as schools or hospitals. The Church only asks for the return of facilities used for business purposes, he explained.

    Archbishop Kiet noted the former nunciature had been used as a discotheque and business place, with signs at one time that a shopping center might be opened there. Earlier this year, thousands of local Catholics occupied the premises but left it after the government promised to return it to the local Church.

    "We eagerly want to develop national unity," the prelate stated.

    Admitting that the government has created better conditions for the local Church in recent years, the archbishop observed this "remains an asking-granting mechanism."

    Rather, he said, "religion is a right people enjoy" and the government has the responsibility to create conditions for this. "Religious freedom is a right, not an asking-granting thing," he stated.

    Bishops and priests from Bac Ninh, Ban Me Thuot, Hai Phong, Hung Hoa, Lang Son, Thai Binh, Thanh Hoa and Vinh dioceses have sent letters of solidarity to Archbishop Kiet. Thousands of Catholics from many parishes in Ha Noi archdiocese gathered and prayed peacefully outside the former nunciature on Sept. 21.

    Posted on 27 Sep 2008


    Vietnam News