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ICC Note: Nuns from St. Paul de Chartres in Hanoi were beaten up by gangsters hired by a woman who has land dispute with them on May 8, while they were preventing construction on the land. They are now accusing Hanoi authorities for granting illegal ownership papers to the woman, claiming that some officials took bribes and disrespected the law.

05/11/2018 Vietnam (UCA News) – St. Paul de Chartres nuns in Vietnam have accused Hanoi authorities of granting a woman illegal ownership papers over their former property after their claim was denied.

“The People’s Committee of Hoan Kiem has abused power to grant Tran Huong Ly an illegal certificate to use the land and building permit on our land,” the sisters said in a complaint.

The nuns, whose congregation has been working in the capital for 135 years, stated that the 200-square-meter land plot is part of their present convent in downtown Hanoi. The were given legal ownership papers for the property in 1949.

They said they have been petitioning city authorities to return the land for decades but “we have not received any proper and fair answer.”

They accused district authorities of “seriously violating land regulations.”

They said the district gave Huong Ly a building permit and a certificate to use the land in 2015. She resumed construction of a nine-story house on the land on May 8 after the nuns’ strong protest made local authorities order her to stop building in 2016.

In a complaint signed by 42 nuns and lay Catholics, the nuns condemned the woman for hiring gangsters to brutally attack them while they were preventing construction on the land on May 8.

They said police did nothing to stop the attack despite their appeals.

The nuns claim Huong Ly can control the local government because some officials have taken bribes and disrespected the law.

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