The Co Tu minority is one of the smallest of the 54 ethnic groups of Vietnam and is part of the Mon-Khmer ethnic language group. There are fewer than 60,000 Co Tu people with the majority living in the highlands of the central provinces of Quang Nam and Thua Thien.
Perhaps one of the most infamous facts about the Co Tu people is their reputation for head hunting. While this practice, referred to as ‘blood hunting’ in the local dialect, was abandoned in 1953 the Co Tu were the last tribe in Southeast Asia to partake in such an activity earning them a dubious reputation. However the reasoning behind their beliefs were just: in times of extreme hardship, when women were grossly outnumbered by men, the men fought to the death for the rights to marry and procreate.