Wednesday, December 12, 2012

New Decree Implementing Religion Law Takes Effect Jan. 1 In Vietnam

Radio Free Asia reported last month on new Decree 92 issued by the government of Vietnam on November 9. The Decree, replacing one originally issued in 2005, goes into effect January 1 to implement the Ordinance on Beliefs and Religion that covers religious practice in Vietnam. The Decree spells out procedures for registering places of worship, activities of religious organizations and clerics. The government recognizes 31 organizations representing 11 religions. However, non-recognized groups are banned. While some Buddhist groups are registered, the government does not recognize the Unified Buddhist Church of Vietnam, whose parent body in Paris issued a statement strongly criticizing the new Decree.