|Deputy PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc on a visit to the Xuyen Moc Detention Centre in southern Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province. — VNA/VNS Photo Manh Duong
HA NOI (VNS) — The Viet Nam's Government's amnesty policy for prisoners reflected the nation's humanitarian tradition, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said yesterday.
Phuc, who is also chairman of the Central Advisory Council on Amnesty, said that the policy encouraged prisoners to reform themselves and become helpful to society.
Viet Nam's National Assembly approved the Law on Amnesty in 2007.
After five amnesties coinciding with key national events since 2009, a total of 63,499 prisoners were freed sooner than scheduled and 687 others given reprieves.
This year, amnesty history will be made on the 70th National Day, September 2. About 18,000 prisoners are eligible to be set free and granted clemency, according to the Public Security Ministry's preliminary report.
"For years, the amnesty policy has made achievements," Phuc wrote.
Socially, the amnesty motivated prisoners to turn over a new leaf. It also reinforced public trust in the State's and Government's lenience.
Economically, the amnesty helped reduce State costs and relieved the pressure on infrastructure at prisons.
Politically, publicity, transparency and democracy in dossier verification helped press agencies and international human right organisations learn more about the country's lenience.
Phuc said that only 0.73 per cent of prisoners who were given amnesty in 2013 returned to crime within a year.
He said this proved the soundness of the amnesty policy and the effectiveness of in-prison education to prisoners.
He added that the Government asked Government's agencies, civil societies and economic organisation to help ex-prisoners integrate back into the community by offering loans, job training and work. — VNS