May 17, 2019

Cassidy Cosponsors Bill to Promote Human Rights in Vietnam

WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) cosponsored the Vietnam Human Rights Sanctions Act, legislation promoting human rights in Vietnam and imposing sanctions and travel restrictions on Vietnamese nationals complicit in human rights abuses.

“The people of Vietnam deserve fair treatment from their government. If we are to continue forging a stronger relationship with Vietnam, we must know they will respect their citizens’ basic human rights,” said Senator Cassidy. “It is important we hold leadership in Vietnam accountable for their record of human rights abuses.”

This bill was introduced by U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) and is also cosponsored by U.S. Senators John Boozman (R-AR) and Marco Rubio (R-FL).

The Vietnam Human Rights Sanction Act would:

  • Direct the President to compile a list of Vietnamese nationals deemed to be complicit in human rights abuses in Vietnam, prohibit those individuals from entering the United States, and impose financial sanctions on them. The sanctions may be terminated if the President certifies to Congress that the Vietnam government has released all political prisoners, ceased its practices of violence, detention, and abuse of Vietnamese citizens engaged in peaceful political activity, and conducted a transparent investigation into the killings, arrests, and abuse of such political activists and prosecuted those responsible.
  • Express the sense of Congress that, due to Vietnam’s atrocious record on religious freedom, the Secretary of State should re-designate Vietnam a “country of particular concern” (CPC) with respect to religious freedom under the International Religious Freedom Act.