International Asia Vietnam battles political sabotage in wake of fish farm disaster

Vietnam battles political sabotage in wake of fish farm disaster

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KUALA LUMPUR
– Vietnam, which will be holding its general elections to elect its members of Parliament for the 2016-2021 term, saw a disruption in its social order in the historic Ho Chi Minh City.
The Vietnamese people will be called to exercise their voting rights, and elect 500 MP’s who will have the daunting task of legislating the necessary laws to help Vietnam embark on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and move forward from the 30 years of Doi Moi or transformation and innovation.
However, the general election mood was tarnished by the political sabotage from the US-based political insurgency organisation Viet Tan
The group is accused by the police in Ho Chi Minh city of playing the massive fish death in the north central provinces against the authorities.
According to Ho Chi Minh City police, Viet Tan, which is considered a terror organisation in Vietnam, disrupted the social order on May 1 and May 8, causing rare public eruptions in the country.
Residents in Ho Chi Minh City and people across the country were stunned by the sudden disturbances, said the police report.
With the elections, Vietnam is moving into a new direction, said observers.
It is allowing more self-nominated candidates to participate in the polls, with the numbers increasing from the 85 who stood as candidates in 2011.
The World Bank, in a report on Vietnam by the year 2035, stressed the importance of strengthening state accountability by ensuring checks and balances between the three branches of government.
This will create opportunities for citizen feedback on public service delivery, to ensure the country’s continued economic development.
The fish farm disaster was a test for the authorities, and their response, though not appreciated by all, was strong enough to fend off a social disaster.
All relevant ministries, agencies, local governments and research institutes have sent experts to the site for investigations. Foreign experts were also invited from the US, Japan, France, Germany and Israel to join the process of finding the causes of the fish deaths.
The fish deaths will remain an economic shortfall for the farmers and fishermen, who were, however provided rice, cash and low-cost loans to continue production, and local authorities have set up outlets selling fish meeting, safety standards.
The Viet Tan, the authorities said, tried to fuel public sentiment against the good running of the country, which has seen peace for the last 30 years.
A large number of people flooded the local authorities in their areas with calls for swift action to deal with the political saboteurs, who have a long history of perpetuating disturbances in Vietnam while operating from abroad.
Some observers said the Viet Tan would not stop at nothing to raise funds outside Vietnam, in order to carry out campaigns on social media in particular, to try disrupt the election process.
But the authorities said they are firmly in control of the situation.
The founder of Viet Tan was Hoang Co Minh ex-vice admiral of Saigon regime before 1975. He established Viet Tan in 1982. The aim was to woo exiled Vietnamese to support the movement against the Communist Party of Vietnam.
Hoang and some exiled Vietnamese set up an organization called “National Front for the liberation of Vietnam”. While some in the West calls it a democratic movement, with the help of some hostile forces, Hoang and his followers established “resistance bases” in the mountains of Thailand as a springboard to take weapons and fighters into Vietnam.
In the long run, Viet Tan became a tool of the hostile forces against Vietnam revolutionary during post-war period, launching a “multifaceted sabotage War” within Vietnam.
In the past, Viet Tan brought counterfeit currency, weapons, drug (cocaine, heroin) into vietnam, in an attempt to corrupt the Vietnamese people. But the schemes failed.
One of their most violent activities remain their killing of five Vietnamese-american journalists.
A movie on this murder was produced by Propublica, in cooperation with Frontline. The movie is entitled “Terror in Little Saigon”.
While some participants at the mass gathering on May 8 even used tear gas to attack the authorities. Four members of the city’s youth voluntary forces were injured, the police acted swiftly.
“The terrorist group’s plots cannot fool patriotic citizens. Their schemes and acts go against the will and aspirations of the entire Vietnamese nation for successful general elections in a stable and orderly atmosphere,” the police said.
The Vietnamese authorities, the observers said, have always respected international conventions on human rights and at the same time adopted measures that comply with its laws and other international standards to ensure security and safety for its people, especially the elderly, women and children.
Only law breakers are punished, they said.
“Through provocative behaviours, reactionary forces are conspiring to destroy the election by any means, causing political and security instability with a hidden aim of overthrowing the regime,” wrote one such observer in a posting on Vietnam News.
By Ali Amir, who is a contributor for http://worldfuturetv.com

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