Vietnam guarantees safe Olympic torch run

April 21st, 2008 - 2:25 pm ICT by admin  

Hanoi, April 21 (DPA) Vietnam Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has met organizers of the Olympic torch relay to be held later this month in Ho Chi Minh City to review arrangements for a safe relay, media reported Monday. Democracy activists on several Vietnamese websites have called for demonstrations along the route of the torch’s progress through Ho Chi Minh City, scheduled for April 29.

“Although the security and social order situation in our country is stable, hostile forces always attempt to disturb security and order, affecting our country’s prestige and position on the international arena,” Dung was quoted as saying by the newspaper People’s Police.

The paper said the prime minister had asked city authorities at a meeting Sunday to organize the Olympic torch relay “solemnly and safely, to show Vietnam’s love for sports and peace and to show the special friendship between Vietnam and China.”

Several Vietnamese democracy activists, who requested anonymity, said that some groups were trying to organize protests and disruptions of the torch relay in Ho Chi Minh City, but that the prime minister’s meeting indicated that a heavy police presence was likely. They said this would make it difficult to organize demonstrations.

“The preparation for the torch relay has been almost completed,” Nguyen Thi Thu Ha, deputy chairperson of Ho Chi Minh City, told DPA. Ha said there would be some 60 people involved in carrying the torch.

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