Press Release Office of Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez 47th District, CaliforniaÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â www.house.gov/sanchez
Â VIETNAMESE GOVERNMENT DENIES REP. LORETTA SANCHEZ VISA Congresswoman barred from Vietnam while conducting security, human trafficking tour of Southeast Asia
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (CA-47), Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Vietnam, today announced that her visa application was ignored by Vietnam’s government. Rep. Sanchez, who just concluded a Congressional Delegation visit throughout critical parts of Southeast Asia, had hoped to meet with Vietnamese human rights activists and other officials during her trip.Â Rep. Sanchez has been blocked from visiting the Communist country multiple times during her time in Congress.
“I am extremely disappointed that Vietnam’s government decided to ignore my visa application,” said Rep. Sanchez, who represents the largest Vietnamese community outside of Vietnam. “For years, Vietnam has promised to expand the civil, political, and religious liberties of its people in exchange for a greater role in international politics. I strongly believe that elected officials from America and other democracies should have the opportunity to assess Vietnam’s progress, or lack thereof, on these issues firsthand.
“Vietnam’s actions today speak volumes about its stated, but disregarded, commitment to improve transparency and accountability in government,” Rep. Sanchez continued. “We already know from news reports that Vietnam continues to harass and imprison citizens who publicly criticize the Communist government. I fear nothing will change unless the U.S. and international communities take concrete action to punish Vietnam for its abuses.”