UN to consider Vietnam’s human right report on September 24

Published: 22/09/2009 05:00



VietNamNet Bridge – VietNamNet talked with Ambassador Vu Dung, Vietnam’s permanent representative to the United Nations about the country’s human right report.

Ambassador Vu Dung (first from the left) at the UN session where Vietnam presented its human right report in May 2009.

Vietnam reports to UN on human rights

Vietnam’s national UPR report adopted

How will Vietnam’s human rights report be considered at the plenary session of the UN Human Rights Council?

The Universal Periodic Review (UPR) is a new and unique mechanism of the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council aimed at improving the human rights situation on the ground of each of the 192 UN Member States.

Under this mechanism, the human rights situation of each member state is reviewed every 4 years.

The result of each review is reflected in an “outcome report” listing the recommendations made to the State under review (SuR), including those that it accepted.

The UPR is a full-circle process comprising 3 key stages:

1) Review of the human rights situation of the SuR

2) Implementation of the accepted recommendations and voluntary pledges and commitments by the SuR

3) Reporting at the subsequent review (four years later) on the implementation of those recommendations and pledges and on the human rights situation in the country since the previous review.

Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh presented Vietnam’s report on its observance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights at the UN Human Rights Council’s session on May 8 in Geneva. The report was enrolled by the Working Group of the Human Rights Council on May 12.

According to the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) procedures, sixty minutes are alloted for this session. First the reporting country will review its report, then concerned countries and certain non-governmental organizations may speak and then the UN Human Rights Council will consider and approve the report.

The Vietnamese delegation in Geneva has worked with members of the UN Human Rights council and the Secretariat to prepare for the session on September 24. We have provided information about the achievements and challenges of Vietnam in this field, so that international friends can see the panorama of the human right situation in Vietnam.

We have listened to the comments of members of the UN Human Rights Council. Vietnam is ready for the session on September 24.

How has Vietnam responded to the international community’s opinions as expressed at the May 2009 meeting to complete its national report on human rights?

To prepare for the upcoming session, Vietnamese agencies compiled a report on the implementation of recommendations for Vietnam and sent the report to the UN Human Rights Council’s Secretariat on August 27. That report pointed out policies, mechanisms and solutions that Vietnam is implementing and the roadmap for carrying out recommendations of the international community in the future.

Vietnam accepted over 80 percent of the 123 recommendations made by member countries at the session in May 2009. This is a high ratio among the nearly 80 countries that have performed the UPR, and shows Vietnam’s open, constructive, responsible and dialogue approach. For some recommendations that Vietnam didn’t accept, Vietnam has explained satisfactorily.

Vietnam is facing many challenges in implementing human rights. How does the international community know about that facture?

Vietnam is a poor country. The consequences of long wars are serious so we can be proud of our achievements in assuring human rights.

In general, the international community has an objective view about human rights in Vietnam. They appreciate Vietnam’s achievements of the renovation period and in economic-social development, hunger eradication, poverty alleviation and ensuring the most fundamental rights of the people.

Many countries speaking at the session in May 2009 considered Vietnam as a good model for developing countries and asked Vietnam to share its experience.

Vietnam understands that it still has to do many things to better ensure the rights and requirements of the people.

Ensuring and promoting human rights is a long and unceasing process. During this process, new matters and challenges always arise, requiring nations to exert effort to improve the living conditions and environment of the people.

Through this dialogue, most countries have correct views about the situation in Vietnam. I think that inappropriate comments about human rights situation in Vietnam are caused by the shortage of information. Many people are not updated with information about Vietnam and they don’t see with their own eyes the changes in Vietnam, so they are still influenced by old views.

There are some individuals or groups that for their own interests and even in a spirit of hatred always try to smear our country. I don’t want to comment about the nature of these activities but I know that they are the minority and that even that minority is changing.

What’s your evaluation of bilateral or regional dialogue channels to clarify issues related to the implementation of human rights in Vietnam?

We emphasize dialogue and bilateral cooperation with other countries in human rights-related issues of common concern to help the international community understand thoroughly Vietnam’s special conditions, especially our legal system, its policies, its historical situation and cultural characteristics. Thus we aim to strengthen mutual understanding, restrict differences and highlight objective and constructive principles.


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