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Vietnam Arrests Four More Degar Montagnard House Church Christians For Refusing To Join Government Sanctioned Church

7/20/07 Vietnam (Montagnard Foundation) – On 5 June 2007 at approximately 7:00 pm armed Vietnamese government security forces (cong an) from Ia Grai district and Ia To commune entered the village of Ploi Te and arrested four of our Christian brothers at their houses and charged them with being Christians who refuse to join the government sanctioned church. The security forces arrested these men one by one and imprisoned them at the prison facility in Ia Grai district. Due to the long widespread use of torture, including beatings and electric shock torture against house Church Christians the personal welfare of these four Degar Montagnards is at risk. At the current time these four Christian brothers remain in police custody. Their names are as follows:

  1. Ksor Ayom (born 1963) from Ploi Te village, commune Ia To, district Ia Grai, Gialai province.
  2. Rahlan Pien (born 1978) from Ploi Te village, commune Ia To, district Ia Grai, Gialai province.
  3. Rahlan Pak (born 1984) from Ploi Te village, commune Ia To, district Ia Grai, Gialai province.
  4. Rmah Tiu (born 1977) from Ploi Te village, commune Ia To, district Ia Grai, Gialai province.

THE MONTAGNARD FOUNDATION CALLS ON:

Ø Concerned Embassies, the Red Cross and other international humanitarian agencies to urgently check the prisoner’s welfare, ensure they are not tortured and demand Vietnam release them.

Ø Concerned Embassies, Red Cross and international community urgently demand Vietnam release and account for all Degar Montagnard prisoners including those 350 identified in the Human Rights Watch report of 14 June 2006. http://www.hrw.org/english/docs/2006/06/14/vietna13542.htm

Ø Concerned Embassies, Red Cross and international community pursue a permanent humanitarian presence in the Central Highlands by US, UN and international NGOs to address the underlying causes of the persecution of the indigenous Degar Montagnards.

Ø The US State Department place Vietnam back on the ‘Country of Particular Concern’ (CPC) the watch list of the most egregious state violators of religious freedom.

The Montagnard Foundation pledges peaceful means of advocacy in the spirit of democracy and international cooperation. MFI does not seek independence but pray that the Degar Montagnard people will one day live freely as equal citizens within Vietnam .