On the weekend (28 and 29 April) the fourth anniversary of the fall of Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnamese refugees in several cities of the world organised demonstrations to protest against the communist regime in Vietnam.
On the weekend (28 and 29 April) the fourth anniversary of the fall of Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnamese refugees in several cities of the world organised demonstrations to protest against the communist regime in Vietnam. The Vietnamese refugees accused the Hanoi government of destroying human rights in their country. In France, a country with about fifty thousand Vietnamese refugees, demonstrations were planned in a dozen provincial cities and in Paris about three thousand marchers turned out.
SYNOPSIS: The demonstrators gathered on Sunday (29 April) at the Trocadero Square opposite the Eiffel Tower carrying banners saying "Liberate Vietnam" and "Stop Religious Persecutions in Vietnam".
The march through Paris, started near Avenue Kleber where the United States-Vietnamese peace talks were held. The demonstrators marched under flags of the now-defunct Republic of South Vietnam. They were led by saffron-robed Buddhist monks. Many carried placards which equated the communist rulers of Vietnam, with Germany's Nazi regime.
In London on Monday the (30 April) demonstrators marched to the Vietnamese Embassy in Kensignton. An open letter from the Paris head office for the Association of 'Free Vietnamese' appealed to the United Nations to pressure Hanoi to respect the UN Human Rights Charter. The letter also asked South-East Asian governments to allow escapees to cross their territories en route to countries of welcome.
The open letter also asked International Humanitarian organisations to press the Hanoi government to abolish all "re-education camps" and what they call new economy zones, to liberate all political prisoners and to keep their promise of reuniting all Vietnamese families. Lastly, it asked for world public opinion to be mobilised against the Communist regime of Vietnam.