Vietnamese protesters rallied in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Nha Trang and several other cities on Sunday, June 10, over plans for new special economic zones that many fear would be dominated by Chinese investors.
Vietnamese police detained more than a dozen people in the capital, Hanoi, and over 100 in Binh Thuan province, in south-central Vietnam, after protesters clashed with police and stormed a government office.
The Vietnamese government plans to open three special economic zones (SEZs) where foreign investors will be given great incentives and can lease land for up to 99 years in the zones. The bill does not identify potential investors but many Vietnamese are afraid that it will be dominated by investors from China.
The protest video from Nha Trang, a coastal resort city in south-central Vietnam, showed people carried Vietnamese flags and signs.
Animosity toward China runs high in Vietnam, driven in recent years by territorial disputes in the South China Sea. The two communist countries fought a brief war in 1979.
The draft law on the SEZs was scheduled to be passed this week, but on Monday, June 11, the National Assembly voted to delay the law passage until the next session in October, the Associated Press reported.
The demonstrators also protested a planned cyber security law that netizens, particularly Facebook users, say will stifle dissent. The National Assembly is set to vote on the bill on June 12. Credit: Gloriajean Osbourne via Storyful