Vietnamese blogger arrested for criticizing government

Ho Van Hai second blogger arrested in past month

Vietnamese blogger arrested for criticizing government

World Bulletin / News Desk

Ho Chi Minh City police have arrested a blogger for spreading “anti-state propaganda”.

The VN Express news site reported police as saying Thursday that the blogger, a 52-year-old doctor named Ho Van Hai, was arrested Wednesday night over Facebook posts.

The content of the offending posts was not made public and the account has since been taken down.

However, police spokesman Col. Nguyen Sy Quang told VN Express that Hai had “distorted” information in a way that could erode trust in the government.

While charges haven’t been made public, Quang speculated that Hai had violated a controversial penal code provision that criminalizes “propaganda against the Socialist Republic of Vietnam”.

The law commands a prison term of up to 20 years for violators.

Vietnam, whose single party communist state takes a hard stance against dissent, frequently targets bloggers in crackdowns.

October saw the arrest of Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quynh, better known by her pen name Mother Mushroom, under similar circumstances.

She had previously criticized the government’s handling of a catastrophic chemical spill at a Vietnamese steel plant owned by the Taiwanese firm Formosa Plastic Group.

In August 2016, netizens Nguyen Huu Thien An and Nguyen Huu Quoc Duy were sentenced to two and three years, respectively, in a Nha Trang courtroom on charges of “propagandizing against the State of Vietnam” by sharing anti-government material on social media.

In March, activist blogger Nguyen Huu Vinh and his assistant Nguyen Thi Minh Thuy were sentenced to five and three years, respectively, for running a popular website that frequently featured dissident writings.

AA

 

Last Mod: 03 Kasım 2016, 13:29
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