More than 70 international entities have signed a letter to the Biden administration urging it to address the Vietnam government’s persecution of Christians and religious minorities.
According to Alliance Defending Freedom International, a human rights group that signed the letter, the letter outlines the significant increase in repression that Vietnam’s government has perpetrated in the past year.
“… Of particular concern are the government’s intensifying efforts to force Christians to renounce their faith, crack down on house churches that do not submit themselves to government control and coerce members of independent religious groups to join government-controlled religious organizations,” states the letter.
‘Unjust criminal charges’
Antony Blinken, U.S. secretary of state, and Marc Knapper, U.S. ambassador to the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, are among the intended recipients of the letter.
ADF International says the letter details numerous “… unjust criminal charges, arbitrary detentions and other serious government harassment toward religious minority faiths in Vietnam, especially Christians. …”
The harassment and discrimination are also “targeting Vietnamese individuals now residing in the U.S.,” reports ADF International and the letter.
Vietnam is No. 25 on Open Doors’ 2023 World Watch List of places most difficult to be a Christian. In November 2022, Vietnam was put on the U.S. State Department’s Special Watch List because of religious freedom violations, notes ADF International.