Vietnam Human Rights Defenders’ Weekly Dec 29, 2014- Jan 4, 2015: Blogger Nguyen Ngoc Gia Arrested
Defenders’ Weekly | Jan 04, 2015
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On Dec 27, Vietnam’s security forces arrested Nguyen Dinh Ngoc, who is likely to have posted a number of democracy-promoting articles under penname of Nguyen Ngoc Gia, in his private house in Ho Chi Minh City.
The Reporters Without Border (RWB) has called on Vietnam to release Mr. Ngoc immediately.
On Dec 28, Hanoi police detained Mr. Nguyen Truong Chinh, the father of death-sentenced Nguyen Van Chuong, and confiscated all his banners. Mr. Chinh has been holding demonstrations in recent weeks in the center of Hanoi to protest unfair trials for his son.
Vietnam’s security forces have harassed many land petitioners who are gathering in Hanoi and other cities to seek for justice.
And many other interesting news.
Vietnam Arrests Third Blogger, Intensifying Crackdown ahead of Party Plenum
Vietnam has arrested the third blogger within one month, showing the government iron hand against online bloggers ahead of the communist party’s plenum which is scheduled in January next year.
Blogger Nguyen Dinh Ngoc, 48, was arrested on Dec 27 at his house in Ho Chi Minh City, local newspapers reported, adding the city’s security forces will continue their investigation into his violations.
However, the police did not unveil any details on the accusation against him.
Ngoc’s arrest is the third within a month. In late November, HCM City police arrested Hong Le Tho, the owner of Nguoi Lot Gach blog and one week later, they detained Nguyen Quang Lap who runs Que Choa blog.
The three activists will be interrogated for their postings which criticize government policies and human rights violations.
Bloggers Lap and Hong posted many articles condemning China’s invasion in the East Sea while many believed that Ngoc has pen name Nguyen Ngoc Gia, who has many writings promoting multi-party democracy and human rights in foreign-based websites.
The arrests of bloggers have showed that the government in a communist-ruled Vietnam is intensifying its online crackdown ahead of the party’s plenum slated in January to prepare for the next National Congress in 2016.
Vietnam’s communists have vowed to hold the country under one-party regime, tolerating no criticism. The communist government has used controversial articles in the Criminal Code to silence local dissent which has voiced against bad economic management, rampant corruption and weak response to China’s expansionism in the East Sea.
The New York-based Human Rights Watch, the Paris-based freedom watchdog Reporters Without Borders and other international human rights bodies have protested the arrests of Vietnamese bloggers, saying these moves have violated human rights on freedom of expression.
Earlier, the Reporters Without Borders, which lists Vietnam as an “Enemy of the Internet,” has ranked the country 174th out of 180 nations in its press freedom index for 2014.
According to the Human Rights Watch, Vietnam is holding between 150 and 200 activists and bloggers who are exercising their basic rights.
Long An Province Police Try to Assassinate Land Petitioner
Police forces in the southern province of Long An have tried to assassinate Le Thi Ngoc Da, a land petitioner in Long An province, on her way to attend the anniversary of the establishment of the Front for Victims of Injustice, said the victim.
However, they failed as she narrowly escaped their deadly acts, she noted.
In recent months, the local police have regularly harassed her family, she noted.
Ms. Da, a war invalid in Long An, was cheated by local authorities which took nearly ten hectares of land. She has sent petitions to many state agencies in the last decade but received any response from authorities.
On April 20111, she was arrested and charged under Article 258 of the Criminal Code for democracy abuse to cause harm to state. She was sentenced to 42 months in prison, and released in September 2013.
Hanoi Police Detain Father Who Demanding for Re-investigation, Fair Trials for His Son
Hanoi police on Dec 28 detained Mr. Nguyen Truong Chinh who had been holding demonstration in Ly Thai To park in Hanoi city for 11th consecutive day to protest unfair death sentence for his son Nguyen Van Chuong.
The police took his into police station and confiscated all his banners which demand re-investigation and fair trials for Chuong, who was found guilty to kill a police officer in Haiphong in unfair trials.
During his demonstration in the capital city, a number of activists came to support his family to demand for re-investigation and fair trials for his son.
The execution of Chuong was slated in late December last year.
Three Land Petitioners Accused under Article 88 of Criminal Code
Three Saigon-based land petitioners Nguyen Thi Tri, Ngo Thi Minh Uoc, and Nguyen Thi Be Hai are held for probe of conducting anti-state activities under Article 88 of Vietnam’s Criminal Code.
The trio was arrested on July 8, one day after they participated in peaceful demonstration in the front of the U.S. General Consul in Ho Chi Minh City.
Being released after two weeks of detention, the trio was re-arrested later.
Currently, the trio is held in Phan Dang Luu 3 detention facility.
Former Prisoner of Conscience Condemns Torture, Bad Treatment
Tran Thi Ngoc Anh, who just completed her 15-month imprisonment, said she was tortured and badly treated during the investigation as well as during imprisonment.
“During interrogation, police investigators tortured and threatened in a bid to force me to speak as they want. Sometime they called other men to the interrogation room to insult me,” said Ms Anh with her talk with Chu Manh Son, who is also former political prisoner.
Ms. Anh is one of numerous land petitioners in Vietnam. She was accused of conducting social disorders as she sent petitions and participated in demonstrations demanding local authorities to return her land which authorities illegally seized.
Currently, her health is very bad with numerous injuries on her body due to police torture and bad conditions in prison.
Death-sentenced Ho Duy Hai not Allowed to Being Visited
The prison’s authorities on Dec 30 refused the family of death-sentenced Ho Duy Hai to visit him, saying he is under re-investigation after the family claims that he was unfairly tried.
In order to protest the prison’s authorities, Mrs. Nguyen Thi Loan, Hai’s mother, took off her clothes.
Loan declared that if Vietnam’s authorities applies execution for Hai, she will self-immolate before Ho Chi Minh mausoleum in Hanoi city.
RWB Calls on Vietnam to Release Blogger Nguyen Dinh Ngoc
The Reporters Without Borders (RWB) has urged Vietnam’s government to immediately free blogger Nguyen Dinh Ngoc, who was arrested on Dec 27 under accusation of conducting illegal activities.
Mr. Ngoc was arrested at his private house in Ho Chi Minh City.
He is the third blogger arrested in November-December. In late November, Vietnam arrested Hong Le Tho and a week later, they detained blogger Nguyen Quang Lap.
Vietnam’s security forces have intensified political crackdown to silence dissidents and social activists.
Currently, Vietnam holds 29 bloggers for anti-state propaganda.
FVPoC Sends Congratulations on Occasion of New Year 2015
The Former Vietnamese Prisoners of Conscience has sent congratulations on the occasion of New Year 2015 to all human rights activists as well as all Vietnamese people in the country and abroad.
The FVPoC also reviewed the country’s events in 2014 and its working plan for 2015.
Dong Nai Family Becomes Landless after Local Authorities Seizes Its Land
Dong Nai province’s authorities have illegally seized the land where the family of Truong Thi Quy in Dong Nai resides, making her family maintains landless.
The land parcel was explored by Quy’s mother Nguyen Thi Coi in 1975 but the local authorities said it is illegal. They seized the land and imprisoned Mrs. Coi for 15 months for defaming state officials and illegal use of land after she sent petitions to many state agencies.
On July 15, Dong Nai sent numerous policemen and tractors to clear properties of Quy’s family. After that, they built 13 houses on the land for local cadres and for sale.
Currently, Quy’s family lives in small tent.
Unsanctioned Mennonite Church Suppressed in First Week of 2015
After being suppressed in Binh Duong, Pastor Nguyen Hong Quang of Christian Mennonite Church bought a parcel of land in District 12 in a bid to build a church. However, local authorities have not allowed him to construct the church although he got license.
Other pastors and followers of the church on Jan 1 gathered in Pastor Quang to pray and celebrate the New Year but police came to disrupt. A number of followers were detained and beaten.
In November, police forces and mobs destroyed the Mennonite Church under supervision of Pastor Tran Minh Hoa.
Many People Say They Would Self-immolate to Protest Gov’t
Three citizens have declared that they would self-immolate if Vietnam’s authorities do not stop harassment against them or take move to settle their requests.
Ms. Nguyen Thi Thuy in Haiphong is bravely protecting her land although local authorities have sent numerous policemen in a bid to illegally seize the land.
Meanwhile, the families of Ho Duy Hai and Nguyen Van Chuong said they will come to Ho Chi Minh mausoleum in the capital city of Hanoi to self-immolate if their children are being executed.
Hai and Chuong were found guilty in murder cases by unfair trials, they said.
Vietnam Intensifies Crackdown to Silence Peaceful Critics: Blogger Dieu Cay
Vietnam has intensified political crackdown with recent arrests of local bloggers in a bid to silence the country’s peaceful critics, said Nguyen Van Hai, a prominent blogger with nickname Dieu Cay.
Speaking at an interview with the Radio of Free Asia, Mr. Hai said the arrested bloggers have strong influence on the society.
The arrests, however, will increase anti-government sentiment among local people as they showed the bad nature of the ruling communist party, Mr. Hai added.
HCM City Police Illegally Arrest Innocent Citizens on New Year Day
Police in Ho Chi Minh City on Jan 1 detained nine innocent citizens when they gathered to celebrate the New Year in local park.
In Ben Nghe police station, one of the detained namely Van was beaten seriously.
Later, policemen divided the arrested in three groups in three police stations where they took off clothes of them and beat.
Truong Thi Quang, Nguyen Thi Nhan Huong and Bui Thi Thanh received a number of injuries.
All of arrested are land petitioners who have sought to demand their seized land returned.
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