Blogger Huynh Truong Ca Probed for “Anti-state Propaganda”

Mr. Huynh Truong Ca in police station after being detained on Sept 4, 2018

Defend the Defenders, September 15, 2018

On September 14, police of Vietnam’s southern province of Dong Thap issued a decision to probe Mr. Huynh Truong Ca, a local resident, on allegation of “Making, storing, spreading information, materials, items for the purpose of opposing the State of Socialist Republic of Vietnam” under Article 117 of the 2015 Penal Code.

According to the province’s Police Department, Mr. Ca had posted videos with contents harmful for the ruling communist party and its government on social networks such Youtube and Facebook. He was also said to make online calls for anti-government demonstrations.

Mr. Ca, 47, is said to be a member of a unregistered group named Hien Phap (Constitution).

Mr. Ca, living in Hong Ngu district, was arrested on September 4 on the way from Tien Giang province to Ho Chi Minh City.

He is one of many activists arrested in late August and early September as the Vietnamese police were put on high alert in view of calls for protests against the government for its failure to address systemic corruption and pollution, its weak response to China’s infringement upon Vietnam’s sovereignty in the South China Sea, and its growing human rights violations.

Other detainees are blogger Nguyen Ngoc Anh from Ben Tre province, Ngo Van Dung from Dak Lak province, Doan Thi Hong from Binh Thuan and Do The Hoa from HCM City. The first was charged with allegation under Article 117 while the charges against the remaining three are unclear and HCM City’s police have yet to inform their families about their arrest and potential charges. Even authorities in HCM City have yet to confirm the detentions of Doan Thi Hong and Ngo Van Dung.