Ambassador Nguyen Trung Thanh, Vietnamese permanent representative to the United Nations, the World Trade Organisation and other international organisations based in Geneva, Switzerland, offered the praise during discussions with special UN rapporteurs on the occasion of the UNHRC’s 25th session, taking place throughout March.
Together they talked about issues surrounding freedom of religion or belief and the protection and promotion of human rights and fundamental rights while countering terrorism.
Vietnam shares the view that terrorism and religious hatred not only cause human and economic losses and disrupt peaceful lives but also undermine cultural and religious values and global efforts to build a world of peace, security and prosperity, he said, adding that terrorists and their sponsors involved in inducing and inciting terror acts must face punishment by law.
According to Thanh, counter-terrorism measures should comply with all regulations and standards of international law, including the UN Charter and the law on humanity and international human rights, especially the rights to life, information security and equality before the law, he noted.
He said Vietnam backs the UNHRC and global community’s comprehensive approach to dealing with religious hatred and terrorism, with poverty, unemployment, inequality, racial and religious discrimination as underlying causes.
He also reiterated Vietnam’s commitment to promoting and protecting people’s fundamental rights and freedom, including that of religion and belief.
In his remarks, Thanh said 95 percent of the Vietnamese population are practising popular religions such as Buddhism, Catholicism, Protestantism and Islam.
The ambassador also took the opportunity to reveal that Vietnam is working closely with the UN to prepare for a working visit later this year by special UN rapporteurs on religion.
Within the UNHRC’s multilateral cooperation framework, Thanh joined ambassadorial-level consultation and discussion sessions by the Non-Aligned Movement and the Like-Minded Group. He also held bilateral meetings to discuss issues of interest that will be submitted to the UNHRC.
The UNHRC groups 47 member countries who hold three annual meetings. Vietnam was recently been elected as a member for the 2014-2016 tenure.
Its 25th session is expected to attract over 80 high-ranking delegations from 193 UN countries, international and non-governmental organisations.