REPORT ON CONTINUOUS VIOLATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS IN VIETNAM
§ Jan. 6: The Vietnamese communist authorities mobilized a massive police force to round up the followers of the Catholic Diocese of Thai Ha, Dong Da district, Hanoi while they were rallying to pray for the return of a land property which was the historic site of the Vietnamese Catholic Church’s Office of the Apostolic Nuncio that the communist government unlawfully took over years ago.
§ Jan. 9: Uniformed and plainclothes police were called up to quell a demonstration staged by youths and college students in Hanoi and Saigon to protest expansionist China. Scores of protesters were arrested.
§ Jan. 10: Victim of injustice Luong Van Sinh, a resident of Binh Thuan province, was imprisoned on charges of joining Bloc 8406 Bloc and communicating with ‘reactionaries’.
§ Jan. 15: The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) denounced the communist government’s intentional use of harsh treatment and forced labor against such political prisoners as Le Nguyen Sang, MD, lawyers Nguyen Bac Truyen, Tran Quoc Hien and Nguyn Van Dai, and journalist Huynh Nguyen Dao.
§ Jan. 16: The For the People Party (FPP) denounced the communist government’s inhumane treatment of journalist Truong Minh Duc, Kien Giang province, who has been detained since May 5, 2007. Having denied medical care for his broken arm due to an accidental fall, his health has been seriously deteriorating.
§ Jan. 19: The Vietnamese communist authorities continued to employ various measures of repression against youths and college students in Hanoi and Saigon who staged peaceful demonstrations protesting communist China, mainly the interrogations and arrests of a number of bloggers, including film director Song Chi, war veteran Hoang Hai, lawyer Phan Thanh Hai, poet Bui Chat, Quoc Dung, Uyen Vu, Anh Bang, Le Hao, as well as other college and high school students. A police checkpoint was installed in front of writer Nguyen Xuan Nghia’s residence in Hai Phong to prevent him from joining the demonstrations in Hanoi. Many protesters were ruthlessly beaten by the police and numerous others, teacher Vu Hung of Ha Tay included, arrested.
§ Jan. 21: Former police officer Ta Phong Tan submitted a letter denouncing illegal arrests made by the Cau Ong Lanh precinct police in District 1, Saigon.
§ Jan. 25: Lawyer Le Quoc Quan, a H’Mong ethnic woman and other Catholic faithful were severely injured during a police roundup of praying protesters in front of the defunct Office of the Apostolic Nuncio in Hanoi.
§ Jan. 29: Citizens Truong Quoc Huy and Hang Tan Phat were each sentenced to 6 years of imprisonment and 3 years of house arrest for having allegedly distributed anti-State leaflets.
§ Jan. 30: The communist government issued two unconstitutional, undemocratic and anti-human rights decrees (No. 11/2008 and 12/2008), aimed at prohibiting worker strikes.
§ Jan. 31: The authorities was forced to free writer Tran Khai Thanh Thuy due to her poor health conditions after she had been unjustly held for 9 months and 10 days and subjected to constant slandering and harsh treatment, which led to her quickly deteriorating health.
§ Jan 31: Democracy activist student Nguyen Tien Nam was unjustly detained by the police of Trang Tien ward, Hanoi; he was brutally terrorized, both physically and mentally.
§ Feb. 3: Journalist Hoang Hai (blogger Dieu Cay) in Saigon was unlawfully forced to report to a police interrogation.
§ Feb. 5: Hoang Hai was taken back for another interrogation from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the police station of Precinct 8, District 3.
§ Feb. 8: Police arrived at the residence of journalist Nguyen Xuan Nghia in Hai Phong, threatening to beat him up if he attempted to attend Prof. Hoang Minh Chinh’s funeral in Hanoi.
§ Feb. 11: Venerable Thich Nhat Ban, Dong Nai province, a member of the Unified Buddhist Church of Vietnam (UCBV), was harassed at his Ba La Mat temple by the police of Long Thanh district, Dong Nai province. Meanwhile Mr. Tran Khue in Saigon was prevented from boarding a plane to attend Prof. Hoang Minh Chinh’s funeral in Hanoi.
§ Feb. 12: Mr. Do Nam Hai in Saigon was prohibited from leaving Saigon for the funeral while Venerable Thich Khong Tanh was harassed on his way to Hanoi to perform religious rites for the deceased professor.
§ Feb. 12 & 13: The police of Tuy Phuoc district, Binh Dinh province, subjected Monk Thich Dong Tho and Venerable Thich Minh Tuan, head of the UBCV Nguyen Thieu Monastery, to unlawful interrogations.
§ Feb. 14: A large police force installed a checkpoint in front of journalist Nguyen Khac Toan‘s home in Hanoi, preventing him from attending Prof. Hoang Minh Chinh’s funeral. Messrs. Ha Si Phu, Bui Minh Quoc, Vu Hung, Pham Van Troi, Nguyen Thuong Long, and Do Duy Thong were also subjected to other measures of movement restriction and isolation.
§ Feb. 15: Dr. An Nhan, an American of Vietnamese descent, was expelled from Vietnam to prevent him from attending the funeral.
§ Feb. 16: The communist authorities violated civil rights and current laws by blocking public access to Prof. Chinh’s funeral in Hanoi. They took Mrs. Duong Thi Xuan into police custody from 9am to 4pm at the police station of Lac Trung precinct, Vinh Tuy district, Hanoi. At the funeral, Mr. Le Thanh Tung and female lawyer Bui Kim Thanh were threatened and roughed up excessively.
§ Feb. 16 & 18: Journalist Hoang Hai (blogger Dieu Cay) was again forced to report to another illegal interrogation by the police of Precinct 8, District 3, Saigon.
§ Feb. 17 –20: Mr. Vo Van Nghe, a member of the Democratic Party, Century XXI, was interrogated by the police in Thanh Hoa province, who accused him of anti-Party activities and forced him to leave his own party.
§ Feb. 22: The FPP denounced the illegal 262-day detention of student Dang Hung before he was released on February 1, 2008 and placed under unlimited house arrest in the province of Dak Lac.
§ Feb. 24: Mrs. Ngo Thi Mai Huong, in an interview with the RFA radio network, charged the communist government of inhumanity by not allowing her to enter Vietnam to visit her husband, Dr. Nguyen Quoc Quan, who has been detained without reason since Novemebr 17, 2007.
§ Feb. 25: Assemblyman Peter Gitmark of Norway’s Conservative Party, disclosed in an interview with the Fædrelandsvennen newspaper that he had been interrogated at his hotel by Vietnamese police and forced to leave Vietnam immediately after his visit to writer Tran Khai Thanh Thuy’s home on February 21, 2008.
§ Feb. 25: Members of the United Workers and Farmers Organization of Vietnam were finally sentenced by the Court of Appeal to prison terms, respectively Mr. Doan Van Dien to 4 years and 6 months of imprisonment (without probation); Mrs. Tran Thi Le Hong (Le Hang), 3 years of imprisonment; Mr. Doan Huy Chuong (aka Nguyen Tan Hoanh), Mrs. Nguyen Thi Tuyết, and Mr. Phung Quang Huyen, each 1 year and 6 months of imprisonment.
§ Feb. 25: The FPP denounced the government's mistreatment of political prisoner Truong Minh Duc, currently held in a prison in Kien Giang province.
§ Feb. 29: Mr. Do Nam Hai’s freedom of movement continued to be violated when he tried to board a plane leaving Saigon for Hanoi.
§ Mar. 2: Many residents of the 9th district of Saigon were detained in connection with a demonstration for the return of their land properties on November 22, 2007 in front of the district office of the People’s Committee. They included Kieu Van Hoa, Nguyen Van Tuan, Nguyen Van Nang, Luu Quoc Luan, Nguyen Nam Dien, Nguyen Thi Tho, Nguyen Thi Dung, Do Thi Mai, Duong Thanh Truc, Nguyen Thi My Van.
§ Mar. 4: Lawyer Bui Kim Thanh was again arrested and held against her will in the Bien Hoa mental hospital.
§ Mar. 6: Mr. Kpa Kloh, 41, died, according to the Protestant BosNews news agency, on February 20, 2008, as a result of being brutally tortured at a prison in Phu Yen province, surviving his wife and 6 children. He had been reportedly arrested and ruthlessly tortured since February 9, 2008, not mentioning previous police assaults and arrests.
§ Mar. 6: Mrs. Ngo Mai Huong, in a letter requesting the release of her husband, Dr. Nguyen Quoc Quan, denounced the communist consular office in San Francisco, CA, as she was denied a visa to enter Vietnam to visit her detained husband.
§ Mar. 7: In an interview with RFA, Pastor Nguyen Van Dien of the Protestant Church of Vietnam, Tra Vinh branch, denounced the provincial authorities who had forced various houses of worship to close and severely beaten their followers, including Pastor Nguyen Van Dien, and Mr. Thach Sanh of the Tra Cu branch. Another Khmer faithful named Kim Hone and many others were also assaulted.
§ Mar. 9: Lawyer Phan Thanh Hai, member of the Free Journalists Club, denounced the Saigon authorities who had intentionally harassed and caused hardship to his company’s business.
§ Mar.10: Venerable Thich Thien Hanh denounced the police who had sent 200 policemen to blockade and harass the Nguyen Thieu Monastery at the beginning of the (Lunar) New Year of the Rat. They have threatened to expel from the monastery Monk Thich Dong Tho, a close disciple of the Most Venerable Thich Huyen Quang, head of the UBCV Institute for the Propagation of the Dharma.
§ Mar. 12: The communist authorities circulated a draft that would constitutionally violate the people’s human rights by attempting to muzzle the freedom of information. Its title was “Decree to Regulate and Punish Administrative Violations in the Management, Provision and Use of Internet services and Electronic Communication on the Internet.”
§ Mar. 24: Mr. Le Thanh Tung denounced the officials of Chuong My district, Ha Tay province, who had illegally handcuffed victim of injustice Tran Van Loc for a full year, violating his human rights.
§ Mar. 27: Mr. Do Nam Hai was forced by the Phu Nhuan district police in Saigon to report to a police interrogation; his personal office equipment was confiscated, without his presence, in a police search of his home.
§ Mar. 27: Mrs. Ho Thi Thuong, wife of Mr. Doan Van Dien (recently sentenced to prison) denounced in an interview with RFA that local authorities had threatened her verbally and obstructed her interview.
§ Mar. 28: Journalist Truong Minh Duc was sentenced to 5 years of imprisonment by an illegal trial court in Vinh Thuan district, Kien Giang province during which he was not accompanied by a defense lawyer or allowed to defend for himself despite the fact that he had been mistreated in prison.
§ April 2: The UBCV’s International Buddhist Information Bureau (IBIB) denounced Vietnamese communist police who had raided several UBCV temples, namely Giac Hai in Lam Dong province and Phuoc Hue in Quang Tri province, in preparation for the upcoming government-hosted International Vesak Day.
§ April 3: Venerable Thich Thien Minh, in Urgent Notice, No. 2 of the Former Political and Religious Prisoners Association, denounced Bac Lieu provincial officials who had used dirty tricks to harass, slander, blemish, and “publicly denounce” him in the mass media.
§ April 4: The Viet Tan Party condemned, in its Press Release No. 15, the communist authorities for having illegally arrested its members Nguyen Tan Anh, Mai Huu Bao and Nguyen Thi Xuan Trang on March 4, 2008, when they arrived from the US for a visit to their party comrades, Dr. Nguyen Quoc Quan and Mr Somsak Khunmi, and collaborators Nguyen The Vu and Nguyen Viet Trung, who all are currently held at the B34 prison at 237 Nguyen Van Cu Street in the 1st district of Saigon.
§ April 4: Mr. Do Nam Hai was again forced to have another interrogation concerning documents promoting democracy, stored in his computer that the police illegally confiscated on March 27, 2008.
§ April 5: Viet Tan party members Nguyen Tan Anh, Mai Huu Bao, and Nguyen Thi Xuan Trang, released under international pressure, were immediately expelled from Vietnam.
§ April 8: The UBCV’s IBIB denounced the attempt of the [State-sanctioned] Buddhist Church of Vietnam to take over Giac Hai Temple in Lam Dong province by expelling Venerable Thich Tri Khai from the temple. .
§ April 9: A massive force of armed personnel and riot police forces was mobilized to ruthlessly quell a demonstration of the Khmer Krom people in An Giang province demanding the return of confiscated land.
§ April 10: The Catholics of Thai Ha were threatened and harassed while they were peacefully praying for the return of the Church’s properties, in the wake of the government’s false accusations and propaganda concerning their peaceful demonstrations.
§ April 11: Relatives of dissidents Nguyen Ngoc Quang, Pham Ba Hai, and Vu Hoang Hai denounced, in a RFA interview, the communist government which had illegally held these detainees for over 2 years without trial.
§ April 13: A large contingent of police was sent to disrupt a meeting of democracy activists in Hanoi by threatening, slandering and assaulting the attendees; Mr. Le Thanh Tung was afterwards taken away together with a number of victims of injustice.
§ April 14: Over 300 people of Ja-Rai ethnicity rallied at a demonstration in Lgia to village, Cho Se district, Gia Lai province, displaying the 3-red-stripes-on-a-yellow-field flag (of the former Republic of Vietnam) and demanding for the return of their land. Many were brutally crushed; others had to flee.
The CHRV strongly condemns the Vietnamese communist government for having repeatedly violated human rights in the first 3 months of 2008. The CHRV hereby calls upon all concerned Vietnamese and people throughout the world to exert adequate pressure in order to improve the situation of serious human rights violations in Vietnam.