Vietnam’s human rights record remains dire in virtually all areas. The ruling Communist Party maintains a monopoly on political power and allows no challenge to its leadership. Basic rights are severely restricted, including freedoms of expression, peaceful assembly, association, and religion. Rights activists and bloggers face police intimidation, harassment, restricted movement, arbitrary arrest, and detention. Farmers lose land to development projects without adequate compensation, and workers are not allowed to form independent unions. The police regularly use torture and beatings to extract confessions. The criminal justice system, including the judiciary, lacks independence. Political dissidents and civil society activists are frequently sentenced to long prison terms on bogus national security charges.

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