WASHINGTON, D.C.--Today, Congressman Ted Poe, Senior Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, issued the following statement on the release of Pastor Duong Kim Khai. Congressman Poe previously addressed the House to raise awareness of the plight of Pastor Khai.
"Pastor Duong Kim Khai Duong was detained or arrested thirteen times since the 1990s, usually for organizing prayer sessions. Most recently, he was arrested in August 2010 for his efforts to advocate for religious freedom and social justice. The trumped up charge? Attempting to overthrow the government. In 2011, the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention ruled that the Vietnam government's detention and conviction of Pastor Duong Kim Khai and six other activists were in violation of international law. But the State Department continued to ignore the situation for years, refusing to include Vietnam as a Country of Particular Concern for religious freedom.
Thankfully Pastor Duong Kim Khai Duong was released from prison this week yet he still remains under unjust house arrest. The Administration should call on the Vietnamese government to release him immediately. The International community should no longer stand for religious persecution, especially when it is sponsored by a government."