Viet Nam: When Non-Emergency Measures Equal Emergency Measures

In Viet Nam, Wthe ‘state of emergency’ clauses are virtually a repetition of measures the government may take when there is no emergency. This means that were the government to declare a state of emergency there would be no reserving policy space for the government to fall back to. Viet Nam should thus seize the opportunity to revise its legislation and clearly distinguish between emergency and non-emergency measure, both in terms of degree and scope.

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Truth vs. Free Speech

Southeast Asian governments have been stepping up their efforts to actively manage the truth by combatting false information. Among the main tools are correction orders and state-run “fake news centers” that monitor and “rectify” alleged falsehoods online. In addition, government discourse employs increasingly belligerent language to denounce the perceived threats. The Southeast Asian “war on fake news” thus makes the region the world’s most vibrant laboratory of anti-falsehood legislation. The protection of the truth is becoming an increasingly accepted ground for restricting free speech.

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A Look behind the Fake News Laws of Southeast Asia

In Southeast Asia, attempts to regulate the fake news phenomenon can be broadly categorized, on the one hand, in cases where fake news laws are conceived at least also as the government’s weapon to silence critics and dissenters, and on the other hand, cases where the discourse is lead more open-ended. Under the first category, Malaysia springs to mind, Cambodia and Vietnam possibly too. Thailand is a somewhat mixed case. Much more open-ended are the fake news discourses in Indonesia, the Philippines and Singapore.

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„Wie in einem finsteren Film über den Kalten Krieg“ – Der völkerrechtliche Hintergrund der Eiszeit zwischen Vietnam und Deutschland

Vietnamesische Agenten entführen mitten in Deutschland einen Asylbewerber, der dann in Vietnam zu lebenslanger Haft verurteilt wird – ein eklatanter Völkerrechtsbruch. Doch auch die Reaktion Deutschlands wirft völkerrechtlich schwierige Fragen auf.

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