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Thais Approve Military Backed Constitution

BANGKOK— Thais voted Sunday to approve a junta-backed constitution that the country’s military leaders say opens the way to new elections but critics see as legitimizing the military’s role in government for years to come Many Thais living in major cities returned to provincial towns and villages to cast their vote at one of the […]

Brexit Will Fundamentally Change The Future Of Europe

Some 33 million people in the U.K. voted in Thursday’s referendum, but their votes will affect the lives of over 500 million people living throughout the European Union. The 52 percent to 48 percent victory of the British campaign to leave the EU is a historic moment not only for the country, but also for […]

Human Rights in Vietnam after Obama’s Visit

President Barack Obama’s three day visit left a lasting and significant impact on the future of Vietnam. On the very first day of diplomatic engagements, the US President announced the lift on the sale of lethal weapons to Vietnam which had been in place for more than five decades, removing the last barrier in the […]

Lifting Vietnam Arms Embargo ‘Largely Symbolic’

The recent abolition of a long-standing arms embargo on Vietnam is a “largely a symbolic one,” Assistant Secretary of State Tom Malinowski told VOA in an exclusive interview Friday. Following up on last month’s historic White House decision to fully lift the half-century-long ban on sales of lethal military equipment to the Southeast Asian country, […]

Moving on in Vietnam, but Remembering Its Lessons

As President Obama visits Vietnam, we are struck by the fact that most citizens of both countries have no living memory of a conflict that claimed the lives of more than 58,000 Americans and upward of a million Vietnamese. As Americans who fought in that war, we are frequently asked about its lessons. There are […]

Letter to President on Dead Fish & Visiting Prisoners of Conscience

May 19, 2016 President Barack Obama The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500 Dear President Obama, We write to bring pressing issues regarding health, environmental, and human rights concerns for your upcoming trip to Vietnam to your attention. We understand that you have received numerous messages, including letters from several of us, […]

The Announcement of 2016 Gwangju Prize for Human Rights Recipients

The 2016 Gwangju Prize for Human Rights Committee has chosen Nguyen Dan Que and BERSIH 2.0 (Gabungan Pilihanraya Bersih dan Adil), as the co-recipient of the Prize. Nguyen Dan Que is a Vietnamese pro-democracy activist in Saigon and BERSIH 2.0 is the Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections. Que was born in April 1942 in […]

What is World Press Freedom Day?

What is World Press Freedom Day? Global observance that stresses that freedom of information is a fundamental human right, weighs the state of press freedom around the world, and is a reminder that in dozens of countries, publications are censored, fined and closed down, while journalists and editors are harassed, attacked, detained and sometimes murdered. […]

Vietnamese Workers in Taiwan Protest Massive Fish Deaths

Taiwan-based Vietnamese workers took to the streets of Taipei on Monday to protest a Taiwanese firm they say caused mass fish kills along Vietnam’s central coast. Some demonstrators also accused government officials in both Taipei and Hanoi of a sluggish response to the environmental disaster. In solidarity with demonstrators who rallied Sunday in major cities […]

As the sea becomes more militarised, the risks of conflict grow

FOR years China has sought to divide and rule in the South China Sea. It worked hard to prevent the countries challenging it over some or all of its absurdly aggrandising territorial claims in the sea from ganging up against it. So when tensions with one rival claimant were high, it tended not to provoke […]

US, South Korea Begin War Games Amid North Korean Threats

The United States and South Korea began a series of annual joint military exercises Saturday, after days of threats by North Korea that it will retaliate if the war games turn into an attack — threats generally made each year. The annual U.S. and South Korean exercises last eight weeks and are meticulously planned. Saturday’s […]

Chill in Taiwan-China Ties Expected After Change of Leadership

TAIPEI— As Taipei’s president-elect prepares to take office in May, ever tense but recently improved relations between China and Taiwan appear headed into a new slump, with the two sides unable to agree on how to hold talks that would build trust and allow the signing of agreements. If China and Taiwan avoid each other […]