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Vietnam tells officials to avoid graft and live modestly

HANOI (Reuters) - Vietnam's Communist Party has set out rules for top officials with an emphasis on fighting corruption, avoiding nepotism and living modestly, the government website said on Tuesday.

The announcement, agreed by the politburo on Monday, comes against the backdrop of a growing crackdown on corruption in the one-party state since security-minded conservatives won greater influence early last year.

The crackdown took on an international dimension this month when Germany accused Vietnam of abducting a former oil official from Berlin who is wanted over losses at a state firm.

Top officials must display "no corruption or opportunism... and be determined to push back against the degeneration in political ideology."

They must have "absolutely no ambition for power", "absolutely not let relatives and acquaintances benefit from their positions" and should lead "an honest, modest, sincere, transparent, simple and generous life".

The crackdown on alleged corruption and mismanagement has focused on inefficient state-owned companies and has led to the rare dismissal of a member of the politburo and calls for the sacking of a vice-minister for her role at an electricity firm.

Trinh Xuan Thanh, the former PetroVietnam official Germany says was abducted from Berlin, is wanted on charges of financial management that caused losses or around $150 million at the state oil firm.

He was shown on state television saying that he had decided to turn himself in, but the government has never given details as to how he returned from Germany.

Arrest warrants were also issued this month against 16 bankers in a fraud case that dates to 2014.

(Reporting by Mi Nguyen; Editing by Matthew Tostevin and Michael Perry)