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20 Harv. Int'l. L. J. 519 (1979)
Legality of Vietnamese Re-Education Camps, The

handle is hein.journals/hilj20 and id is 527 raw text is: VOLUME 20, NUMBER 3, FALL 1979

The Legality of Vietnamese Re-education Camps
On April 30, 1975, the Republic of Vietnam (South Vietnam) collapsed
and the victorious North Vietnamese Army installed military manage-
ment committees in power.' One week later, Saigon radio announced
the mandatory registration of all persons who had served as soldiers,
officers, policemen, or civil servants of the Republic of Vietnam.2
On June Io, 1975, a plan for the re-education of these persons was
announced.3 Over the next three years, hundreds of thousands of
Vietnamese participated in the re-education program.' Some, particu-
larly those who had held lesser positions in the Saigon regime, under-
went a re-education program lasting only three days.5 An estimated one
to three hundred thousand persons, however, were detained in re-educa-
*Stephen B. Young, Assistant Dean and East Asian Legal Studies Research Associate,
Harvard Law School; J.D. Harvard Law School, 1974; B.A. Harvard College, x967.
i. Gen. Duong Van Minh, President of the Republic of Vietnam, announced the
unconditional surrender of the Saigon government on April 30, 1975. N.Y. Times, Apr.
30, 1975, at i, col. 8. Military management committees were appointed to govern the
territories of the collapsed Republic until elections could be held. Id. May 4, 1975, at 1,
col. 8; id. May 12, X975, at x, col. 8.
2. Saigon-Gia Dinh Municipal Military Management Committee, Order No. i, May
5, r975, reported in Foreign Broadcast Information Service, Daily Report, Asia & Pacific
[hereinafter cited as FBIS] May 8, 1975, at L3 (South Vietnam). On May 7, 1975,
locations and procedures for such registration were announced over the Saigon radio.
Police personnel were ordered to report to the Special Police Office on Cong Hoa Street,
the Tran Hung Dao elementary school, or the Bac Ai middle school. All civil and elected
officials were told to register at the Lower House or the Ministry of Ethnic Minorities.
Members of political parties were told on May 23, 1975, to register with the new author-
ities. Organizations, societies, and parties could henceforth only function if they obtained
permission to do so from the Military Management Committee. Even the National
Liberation Front had to seek approval from this Committee for its activities. Similar
registrations took place in all the provinces of South Vietnam. FBIS, supra, May 27,
1975, at L3 (South Vietnam).
3. id. June 11, 1975, at L2 (South Vietnam); id. May 27, 1975, at Li-L2 (South
4. See generally text accompanying note 2o infra.
5. See text accompanying note 17 infra.

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