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House Committee on Foreign AffairsHouse Committee on Ways and MeansIntroducedApril 2nd, 2009
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Vietnam Human Rights Act of 2009
To promote freedom and democracy in Vietnam.
Vietnam Human Rights Act of 2009 - Prohibits U.S. nonhumanitarian assistance to the government of Vietnam in excess of FY2009 amounts unless: (1) the President certifies to Congress that the government of Vietnam has made substantial progress respecting political, media, and religious freedoms, minority rights, access to U.S. refugee programs, and actions to end trafficking in persons; and (2) the federal government provides assistance, in addition to democracy building assistance under this Act, supporting human rights training, civil society building, and exchange programs between the Vietnamese National Assembly and the United States Congress at levels commensurate with or exceeding any increases in nonhumanitarian assistance to Vietnam. Authorizes the President to waive such requirements if increased U.S. nonhumanitarian assistance would promote the purposes of this Act or is otherwise in the U.S. national interest. Prohibits the provision of duty-free treatment for eligible articles from Vietnam until the President certifies to Congress that the government of Vietnam protects freedom of association and does not engage in serious labor rights violations. Authorizes the President to provide U.S. assistance through appropriate nongovernmental organizations and the Human Rights Defenders Fund for the support of individuals and organizations to promote human rights in Vietnam. Declares it is U.S. policy: (1) to take measures to overcome the jamming of Radio Free Asia by the government of Vietnam; and (2) that educational and cultural exchange programs with Vietnam should promote progress toward freedom and democracy. Declares it is U.S. policy to offer refugee resettlement to Vietnam nationals (including members of the Montagnard ethnic minority groups) who were eligible for the Humanitarian Resettlement program, the Orderly Departure program, the Resettlement Opportunities for Vietnamese Returnees program, the Amerasian Homecoming Act of 1988, or any other U.S. refugee program, but who were deemed ineligible for reasons of administrative error or who failed to apply because of circumstances beyond their control.