CFI Urges the Nation to Save Vietnam from Religious Persecution

( [email protected] ) Apr 22, 2004 07:55 AM EDT

VIETNAM -- Christian Freedom International, a grass roots Christian human rights organization, is urging the U.S. to stop religious persecution that persists in Vietnam.

Recently it has been reported that on Easter, nearly 400 Montagnard Christians were killed while they were holding peaceful demonstration asking the government to grant freedom to believe in Christianity. Even today, persecution against minority Christians in Vietnam is ongoing and often times they are forced to publicly renounce their faith.

CFI President Jim Jacobson said, "Vietnam is engaging in a systematic, genocidal crack down against minority Christians in the Central Highlands. The United States and other freedom loving nations must demand an immediate cessation to the religious persecution."

After the incident on Easter, visits by diplomats, journalists, and human rights activists to the Central Highlands are currently prohibited by Vietnamese authorities. Vietnam has already blacklisted CFI President Jim Jacobson from entering the country.

Christian Freedom International is calling for an end to the persecution of Christians in Vietnam and for international observers to be given immediate access to the region.

"Vietnam must allow immediate access to the region by outside observers," said Jacobson.

According to the U.S. State Department, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, "A significant number of religious believers experience harassment because they operate without legal sanction. Local officials have persecuted 'unregistered' Protestant believers in the northwestern provinces and the Central Highlands for a number of years, including through the demolition of churches and forced renunciations of faith."