Rights group condemn attacks on Vietnam activists, bloggers

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Hanoi, June 19 (IANS) An international human rights group on Monday condemned attacks on bloggers and activists in Vietnam and it urged the government to carry out impartial investigations.

In a new report, the Human Rights Watch (HRW) detailed 36 incidents in which campaigners and bloggers were attacked between January 2015 and April 2017, reports Efe news.

“It’s bad enough that activists in Vietnam have to risk prison for speaking out, but now they have to risk their safety on a daily basis simply for exercising their basic rights,” said HRW Asia Director Brad Adams.

“The Vietnamese government needs to make it clear that it will not tolerate this kind of behaviour and bring to an end this campaign against rights campaigners,” he added.

In the report, victims describe how they were beaten in the presence of uniformed policemen, who never intervened or came to their defence.

One of the latest cases is that of activists Huynh Thanh Phat and Tran Hoang Phuc who were abducted while waiting for a bus.

A group of masked men put them in a van and beat them up before releasing them.

Adams stressed that these activists will not abandon their cause despite the persecution they suffer, as he called on donor countries and Vietnam’s trading partners to urge Hanoi to “stop the beatings and to hold these violent assailants accountable”.

–IANS

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