Photo by Defend the Defenders.

[Vietnam] Court sentences activist to 6 years in prison for Facebook posts

For Facebook posts on environment and democracy, Vietnamese activist Nguyen Ngoc Anh was sentenced to six years imprisonment today, 06 June 2019. The decision was handed down by the People’s Court of Ben Tre province during the one-day trial.

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[Vietnam] Open Letter to Facebook: Don’t Give in to Censorship

With over 64 million Facebook users and not a single independent newspaper in Vietnam, Facebook is where Vietnamese go “to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them.” On the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, we urge Facebook to abide by this aspiration of its mission statement.

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Vietnamese blogger and activist Pham Doan Trang

[Vietnam] The Net as the New ‘Battlefield’

The unique Communist one-party system, combined with a socialist-style free market economy, has created a narrow window of opportunity for non-state and independent media to grow over the years, despite state censorship. For the most part, the Internet in Vietnam is still accessible to the majority of the population. With the use of a virtual private network (VPN) and other methods to jump over the firewall, people have been able to access almost all of the contents of websites the government had blocked. Vietnam has yet to build a Great Firewall like that of China.

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From Le Minh The's Facebook

[Vietnam] Facebook posts critical of cybersecurity law land activist two years in jail

Activist Le Minh The was sentenced Wednesday, 20 March 2019, to two years in prison for “abusing democratic freedom rights to infringe upon the interests of the state and on the legitimate rights and interests or organisations and citizens” under the Article 331 of the 2015 Penal Code. This development came about during his trial in southern Can Tho province, according to news reports. 

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[Vietnam] With new cyber law in place, takedown of online report on plastic pollution a portent of more online crackdowns?

An online report on marine pollution in the coasts of Vietnam, taken down two days ago, remains inaccessible, and raises the specter of intensified crackdown on online media less than two months since a new cyber security law came into force. 

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[Vietnam] Radio Free Asia blogger goes missing after seeking refugee status in Thailand

Vietnamese blogger Truong Duy Nhat has been missing since 26 January 2019, and no one knows his whereabouts. Just three days ago, on 5 February 2019, Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported that they have lost contact with Nhat and are “extremely concerned” about his safety and well-being.  

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Prominent blogger detained anew

Vietnamese blogger and activist Pham Doan Trang was detained for nine hours by police in Hanoi on 8 March 2018. During that day, Doan Trang’s friends reported seeing a lot of police in civilian clothes around her area. There was no word of her whereabouts until late evening. According to The 88 Project, “She’s now back to the place where she was staying and remains under tight surveillance.”

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