Com­mu­nist party flexes mus­cles with ab­duc­tion

Southeast Asia Globe - - Panorama -

The Viet­namese gov­ern­ment’s day­light ab­duc­tion of al­legedly cor­rupt oil ex­ec­u­tive Trinh Xuan

Tranh from the heart of Berlin has thrown an up­com­ing free trade agree­ment be­tween Viet­nam and the EU into jeop­ardy and sparked a fu­ri­ous re­ac­tion from the Ger­man gov­ern­ment.

Thanh had sought asy­lum in Ger­many af­ter be­ing ac­cused of gross mis­man­age­ment dur­ing his ten­ure at Petro Viet­nam. And while the move an­gered many in Europe, it likely played well with the do­mes­tic au­di­ence in Viet­nam, said An­ton Tsve­tov, an Asian se­cu­rity an­a­lyst at the Cen­tre for Strate­gic Re­search. “What is im­por­tant for the Com­mu­nist party, and for their le­git­i­macy, is to show that the party is con­stantly clear­ing its ranks and not fall­ing into the traps of cap­i­tal­ism and the mar­ket econ­omy – that it keeps it­self clean,” he said. “So I think this is an im­por­tant part of that im­age-build­ing do­mes­ti­cally.”

Trinh Xuan Tranh sits on a park bench in Berlin

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