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Tuesday, 30 October, 2001, 11:33 GMT
Vietnam rejects press freedom calls

Calls for press freedom in Vietnam have been criticised by an official newspaper and a senior official of the ruling Communist Party shortly before a national conference of journalists gets under way in Hanoi.

The People's Army newspaper said the Western model of press freedom was not suitable for Vietnam, and hostile forces could not be given the freedom to spread subversive propaganda.

The article referred to the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, as an example of what it called the painful consequences of Western press intrusion into private lives.

The English language Vietnam News reported a speech by a Politburo member, Phan Dien, warning against growing commercialisation and the ideological weakness of the press.

All media outlets in Vietnam are state owned.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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