WORLD NEWS

Vietnam detains 20 following mass land eviction

Apr 25, 2012, 7:27 AM

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) – Authorities in northern Vietnam have detained 20 people after thousands of police evicted farmers from their land to make way for a satellite city, witnesses and state media said Wednesday.

More than 1,000 villagers were overpowered by some 3,000 police and militiamen, many of them in full riot gear, during Tuesday’s incident, said a protester who gave her name only as Thinh.

She said villagers had camped out at their farms overnight to try to hold onto their land. Police fired tear gas and smoke grenades to disperse the farmers, who pelted them with rocks and bricks.

A video posted on YouTube showed police beating a villager. The sound of shots can be heard in the background. The video could not be verified, and it was unclear who was firing the shots and what type of weapon was being used.

Wednesday’s Thanh Nien newspaper quoted Bui Huy Thanh, chief administrator of Hung Yen provincial People’s Committee, as saying police detained 20 villagers for their “extremist behavior,” seized gasoline bottles and many bags of bricks, and are investigating ring leaders for assaulting officials on duty.

“This group of people do not have any other demand than demanding to cancel the project and return land to the villagers,” he said. “This demand is unacceptable because the project was approved by the prime minister … and people’s interests were met fairly.”

Thanh said the eviction involved 5.8 hectares (14 acres) of 166 families, part of the 72.6 hectares (180 acres) in the second phase of the project.

The Ecopark project was awarded to Viet Hung Co. Ltd., a private company, in 2004 to develop a satellite city in Hung Yen province that would cover 500 hectares (1,235 acres) in three villages about 20 kilometers (12 miles) southeast of the capital, Hanoi, officials have said. More than 4,000 families will lose their farmland.

The farmers had periodically staged protests in Hanoi to demand higher compensation or cancel the project altogether.

Another protester who gave her name only as Kiem said her family lost 900 square meters (9,687 square feet) of land as a result of Tuesday’s eviction.

Kiem said the company initially offered 55,000 dong ($2.70) per square meter of farmland in 2005 and has since raised the rate to 150,000 dong ($7.50). However, her families and some 1,800 others did not agree to give up their land.

“We are farmers, we need land to make our living,” she said by telephone from Hung Yen. “Now that we lost our land, how can we survive?”

The incident comes after another high-profile land dispute this year involving a fish farmer in the northern port city of Hai Phong who allegedly attacked authorities with homemade land mines and improvised shotguns as they were moving in to evict his family.

The case has attracted so much attention that Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung demanded an investigation, ruling in February that the eviction was illegal and that those who ordered it should be punished. He also encouraged local authorities to renew the family’s land lease.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

World News

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who reportedly died in prison on Friday, Feb. 16, 2024, i...

Associated Press

Alexei Navalny, galvanizing opposition leader and Putin’s fiercest foe, died in prison, Russia says

Alexei Navalny, the fiercest foe of Russian President Vladimir Putin, died Friday while incarcerated, the country's prison agency said.

6 days ago

Britain's King Charles III and Queen Camilla leave The London Clinic in central London, Monday, Jan...

Associated Press

Britain’s King Charles III has cancer and is receiving treatment

Britain's King Charles III has been diagnosed with a form of cancer and has begun treatment, Buckingham Palace announced Monday.

17 days ago

A resident flees an encroaching forest fire in Vina del Mar, Chile, Saturday, Feb. 3, 2024. Officia...

Associated Press

At least 46 reported dead in Chile as forest fires move into densely populated central areas

Intense forest fires burning around a densely populated area of central Chile have caused at least 46 deaths, Chile's pesident said Saturday.

18 days ago

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, with a payload including two lunar rovers from Japan and the United Arab ...

Associated Press

Unmanned Japanese spacecraft successfully makes soft landing on moon

Japan became the fifth country in history to reach the moon when one of its unmanned spacecrafts successfully landed on the lunar surface.

1 month ago

Associated Press

Israeli Cabinet approves cease-fire with Hamas; deal includes release of 50 hostages

Israel’s Cabinet on Wednesday approved a cease-fire deal with the Hamas militant group that would bring a temporary halt to a devastating war.

3 months ago

Palestinians leave their homes following Israeli bombardment on Gaza City, Monday, Oct. 30, 2023. (...

Associated Press

Israeli airstrikes crush apartments in Gaza refugee camp, as ground troops battle Hamas militants

A flurry of Israeli airstrikes Tuesday on a refugee camp near Gaza City leveled apartment buildings, leaving craters where they once stood.

4 months ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Fiesta Bowl Foundation

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade is excitingly upon us

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe is upon us! The attraction honors Arizona and the history of the game.

...

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Valley residents should be mindful of plumbing ahead of holidays

With Halloween in the rear-view and more holidays coming up, Day & Night recommends that Valley residents prepare accordingly.

...

Sanderson Ford

The best ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day and give back to the community

Veterans Day is fast approaching and there's no better way to support our veterans than to donate to the Military Assistance Mission.

Vietnam detains 20 following mass land eviction