Core international crimes:

Crime of Aggression

Crimes Against Humanity

Genocide

War Crimes



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Domestic Legislation on International Crimes

Crimes

Crime of Aggression / Crimes against Peace

The preparation, waging and carrying out of a war of aggression is punished in Article 421 of the Criminal Code of Viet Nam. See:

  • The Criminal Code of Viet Nam. Law No. 100/2015/QH13, Hanoi, 27 November 2015. [ENG]

    Crimes Against Humanity

    Crimes Against Humanity are punished in Article 422 of the Criminal Code of Viet Nam, although the list of acts amounting to crimes against humniaty is more focused on genocide. See:

  • The Criminal Code of Viet Nam. Law No. 100/2015/QH13, Hanoi, 27 November 2015. [ENG]

    Genocide

    Genocide is punished in Article 422 of the Criminal Code of Viet Nam. See:

  • The Criminal Code of Viet Nam. Law No. 100/2015/QH13, Hanoi, 27 November 2015. [ENG]

    War Crimes

    War crimes are punished in Articles 423-425 of the Criminal Code of Viet Nam. See:

  • The Criminal Code of Viet Nam. Law No. 100/2015/QH13, Hanoi, 27 November 2015. [ENG]

    Jurisdiction

    ➤ The jurisdictional regime of the Vietnamese Criminal Law is provided for under Articles 5 and 6 of the Criminal code:

      "Article 5. Effect of the Criminal Code on criminal offences committed within the territory of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam
      1. The Criminal Code applies to every criminal offence committed within the territory of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.
      It also applies to criminal offences committed on sea-going vessels and airplanes having Vietnamese nationality or operating in Vietnamís exclusive economic zones or continental shelves, or consequences thereof.
      2. Criminal liability of foreigners who commit criminal offences within the territory of Socialist Republic of Vietnam and are granted diplomatic immunity according to Vietnamís law or under an international agreement to which Socialist Republic of Vietnam is a signatory or according to international practice shall be dealt with in accordance with the international agreement or practice. If the case is not set out in any international agreement or there is no such international practice, their criminal liability shall be dealt with in a diplomatic manner.

      Article 6. Effect of the Criminal Code on criminal offences committed outside the territory of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam
      1. Any Vietnamese citizen or Vietnamese corporate legal entity that commits an act outside the territory of Socialist Republic of Vietnam which is defined as a criminal offence by this Code shall face criminal prosecution in Vietnam as prescribed by this Code.
      This clause also applies to stateless residents of Vietnam.
      2. Any foreigner or foreign corporate legal entity that commit a criminal offence outside the territory of Socialist Republic of Vietnam shall face criminal prosecution as prescribed by this Code if such offence infringes the lawful rights and interests of Vietnamese citizens or interest of Socialist Republic of Vietnam or under a international agreement to which Vietnam is a signatory.
      3. Where a criminal offence or its consequence occurs on an airplane or sea-going vessel that does not have Vietnamese nationality at sea or outside Vietnam's airspace, the offender shall face criminal prosecution under an international agreement to which Vietnam is a signatory, if any."
    ➤ Miscellaneous provisions of the Criminal Code applying to the crime of aggression, crimes against humanity, genocide and war crimes:

    Command responsibility:
      "Article 26. Following orders of commanders or superiors
      A person who inflicts damage while following an order of his/her commander or superior in the army to perform national defense and security duties is exempt from criminal responsibility if he/she complies with procedures for reporting to the order giver but the order giver still request that the order be followed. In this case, the order giver shall bear criminal responsibility.
      This provision does not apply to the cases specified in Clause 2 Article 421, Clause 2 Article 422, and Clause 2 Article 423 hereof."
    Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations:
      "Article 28. Non-application of time limit for criminal prosecution
      Time limit for criminal prosecution does not apply to the following crimes:
        1. Infringement of national security specified in Chapter XIII hereof;
        2. Disturbing the peace, crimes against humanity, and war crimes specified in Chapter XXVI hereof;
        3. Embezzlement in the case specified in Clause 3 and Clause 4 Article 353 hereof; acceptance of bribes in the case specified in Clause 3 and Clause 4 Article 254 hereof."
    Concealment of crimes:
      "Article 389. Concealment of crimes
      1. Any person who, without prior promises, conceals any of the following crimes, except for the cases in Clause 2 Article 18 hereof, shall face a penalty of up to 03 years' community sentence or 06 - 60 months' imprisonment:
      [...]
      l) Disruption of peace, crimes against humanity, and war crimes specified in Article 421 through 425."
    Infringement upon duties and responsibilities of servicemen:
      "Article 392. People having criminal responsibility for infringement upon duties and responsibilities of servicemen
      1. Servicemen, military workers and employees.
      2. Reserve servicemen during training period.
      3. Militia members in cooperation with the army in wartime.
      4. Citizens recruited to the army."
    Giving orders against the law:
      "Article 393. Giving orders against the law
      1. Any person who abuses his/her position to give order against the law and as a result causes serious consequences shall face a penalty of up to 03 years' community sentence or 06 - 60 months' imprisonment.
      2. This offence committed in any of the following cases shall carry a penalty of 03 - 10 years' imprisonment:
      a) The offence is committed in battle;
      b) The offence is committed in a warzone;
      [...]"
    See:

  • The Criminal Code of Viet Nam. Law No. 100/2015/QH13, Hanoi, 27 November 2015. [ENG]

    International Criminal Court

    Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court: The Socialist Republic of Viet Nam is not a state party to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.


  • Resources and Links

  • The Constitution of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. (As Amended 25 December 2001)
    Centre Database on Legal Normative Documents. [ENG]. [Last accessed 02Oct17]. [External Link]

  • The Criminal Code of Viet Nam (Law No. 100/2015/QH13, 27 November 2015).
    The Legal System of Vietnam (Hệthốngphápluật ViệtNam). [ENG]. [Last accessed 02 October 2017]. [External link]

  • Resolution No. 144/2016/QH13 dated June 29, 2016, setting the effective date of Penal Code No. 100/2015/QH13, Criminal Procedure Code No. 101/2015/QH13, Law No. 99/2015/QH13 on Organization of Criminal Investigation Bodies, and Law No. 94/2015/QH13 on Custody and Temporary Detention, and addition of the draft law amending and supplementing a number of articles of Penal Code No. 100.2015/QH13 to the 2016 law- and ordinance-making program.
    The Legal System of Vietnam (Hệthốngphápluật ViệtNam). [ENG]. [Last accessed 02 October 2017]. [External link]

  • The Criminal Procedure Code of Viet Nam (Law No. 101/2015/QH13, 27 November 2015).
    The Legal System of Vietnam (Hệthốngphápluật ViệtNam). [ENG]. [Last accessed 02 October 2017]. [External link]

  • Official Gazette (Công Báo).
    Viet Nam Government Portal. [VIE]. [Last accessed 02 October 17]. [External link]

  • Gazette. (The English translation of Công Báo).
    Vietnam Law and Legal Forum. [ENG]. [Last accessed 02 October 17]. [External link]

  • Centre Database on Legal Normative Documents.
    [ENG]. [Last accessed 29 September 17]. [External link]

  • Investigation of the My Lai Incident. (Hearings of the Armed Services Investigating Subcommittee of the Committee on Armed Services, House of Representatives, Ninety-First Congress, 2nd Session, under Authority of H. Res. 105)
    The Library of Congress, Federal Research Division. [ENG]. [Last accessed 02 October 17]. [External link]

  • Peers Inquiry: Report of the Department of the Army Review of the Preliminary Investigations into the My Lai Incident
    The Library of Congress, Federal Research Division. [ENG]. [Last accessed 02 October 17]. [External link]

  • United States v. William L. Calley, Jr. (U.S. Court of Military Appeals, 21 December 1973).
    University of Missouri-Kansas City. [ENG]. [Last accessed 02 October 17]. [External link]

  • Excerpt from Prosecution Brief on Command Responsibility, US. vs Medina.
    University of Missouri-Kansas City. [ENG]. [Last accessed 02 October 17]. [External link]

  • List of International Humanitarian Law Treaties to which Viet Nam is a State party. [ENG]
    (International Committee of the Red Cross). [ENG]. [Last accessed 02 October 17]. [External Link]