Hidden Lives - The Untold Story of Urban Refugees (6/43)

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Vietnamese refugee Nguyen, 21, from Con Dau, pictured at her apartment block in Bangkok, Thailand.<br />
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"Because I'm living in a Catholic parish in Con Dau, Da Nang, the Da Nang government wanted to close the parish and take the land away from the people. On May 4th, 2010, there was a funeral of Mrs Dang Thitan, a local woman from the village. The government had refused to allow the funeral to take place so when we brought her coffin to the cemetery the police appeared and they prevented us from entering the cemetery. At that time the people sat around and read the bible but then police reinforcements arrived and started beating the people. The severely attacked the villagers, even pregnant women, they had batons and electric rods. They arrested around 60 people from the parish included my mother, at the end they took away the coffin and left the village in chaos. <br />
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After that all the villagers ran away, some to other parts of Vietnam. The government thought anyone who fled outside were enemies of the country. I went to Laos without any notification to police. I was among the people who threw the muck at the police, they took video so they had my name. Because people resisted the government labelled our village as against them. They wanted to close down the whole village and take away the church and the cemetery. For a long time they don't like the Catholic parish because we had very strong religious belief. In history our village supported the southern government and that's why they don't like these Catholic villages. If you are Catholic you can't work for the government, you have to give up your religion first. We are discriminated against, our village was always overlooked by government.<br />
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My mum was held for 6 months, then sentenced her to home arrest for 9 months, now she has a heart problem because of what happened to her. They thought she was the one who incited violence and they beat her in prison. They follow her now everyday. The other prisoners were badly beat
Vietnamese refugee Nguyen, 21, from Con Dau, pictured at her apartment block in Bangkok, Thailand.

"Because I'm living in a Catholic parish in Con Dau, Da Nang, the Da Nang government wanted to close the parish and take the land away from the people. On May 4th, 2010, there was a funeral of Mrs Dang Thitan, a local woman from the village. The government had refused to allow the funeral to take place so when we brought her coffin to the cemetery the police appeared and they...
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