Another Vietnamese Activist Assaulted by Plainclothes Police Officers



Defend the Defenders 

December 22, 2016


Blogger Truong Minh Huong, a pro-democracy activist in Vietnamís northern province of Ha Nam, has become the latest victim of assaults carried out by local security forces, according to human rights lawyer Ha Huy Son.


On December 22, Mr. Son attended a trial in Ly Nhan district in Ha Nam. After the trial, the lawyer and Mr. Huong, nearly 70 years old, had a lunch in the district center.


After the lunch, when Son went to a bus station to return to Hanoi and Huong took a bus to go home, a plainclothes agent also took the bus and attacked the old activist. 


Seeing the assault, Son also took the bus to accompany Huong to his home but plainclothes agents ordered the bus driver to refuse serving the duo, forcing them to go out.


When the lawyer and the activist took a taxi, plainclothes agents chased with their motorbikes. The policemen called traffic police to stop the taxi and took out Huong to street to beat him under the witness of two traffic cops until he collapsed on the street.


When Son asked the traffic policemen to intervene, they left the scene. They also refused to provide assistance for Huong when Son took him to their station.


Due to the attack, Huong suffered severe injuries in his face and bodies, Son said.


Mr. Huong is a land petitioner. He has also participated in anti-China protests as well as other events which aimed to promote multi-party democracy. He has also assisted other people in Hanoi in protesting corruption.


He has been under regular suppression of the local police which often send plainclothes to his private residence to attack his family with stones. They broke some window glass of his house and once injured his foots.


Huong is among many Vietnamese activists being attacked by plainclothes police officers. 


Former political prisoners Pham Van Troi from Hanoi and Tran Duc Thach from Nghe An said their houses have been attacked with stones and bricks in recent days.


Along with detentions and lengthy imprisonments, Vietnamís government has maintained persecution against political dissidents, activists and human rights defenders, including physical attacks. Dozens of activists have been brutally beaten by plainclothes agents so far this year.


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