Hanoi, 8 April 2023 (TDI): The member of the European Parliament’s Human Rights subcommittee concluded a visit to Vietnam this week. The purpose of the visit was to assess the human rights situation in the country.
The European delegation stayed in Hanoi, the Vietnamese capital, from 4-6 April. This was the subcommittee’s second visit following its last visit in 2017.

On-site, Members of the European Parliament raised the human rights developments in the country following the ratification of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement.

The EU delegation emphasized the furtherance of partnerships between the EU and Vietnam to cooperate on the multilateral forum, including the UN Human Rights Council.

The delegation acknowledged the progress achieved by Vietnam in alleviating poverty and inequality, which resultantly improved the quality of life for the Vietnamese people.

The EU delegation urges Vietnam to the obligation to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including SDG 16 on promoting peaceful and inclusive societies, should be ensured on a priority basis.

The freedom of individuals is critical to prosperity and strong and independent civil society organizations. Such values help to overcome challenges. The delegation members urged Vietnam to uphold these values to confront internal and external challenges.

The EU delegation reaffirmed its support to enhance cooperation with Vietnam to improve its human rights situation. It called for the immediate and uninhibited release of all political prisoners.

The positive role of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) in facilitating economic development in Vietnam was also discussed. EVFTA can help Vietnam become a middle-income country.

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The members of the European Parliament met the Deputy Prime Minister, the Vice-Chairman of the National Assembly’s Committee for Foreign Affairs (NAFAC) accompanied by the representatives from the Committees on Justice and Social Affairs.

They also met the Director and members of the Human Rights Institute, the Standing Chairwoman of the Commission of External Relations of the Communist Party’s Central Committee, and United Nations representatives in Vietnam.

The meetings apprise the delegation about the human rights situation in the country—the panel concluded the visit by emphasizing immediate redressal measures and adherence to humanitarian laws.