Vietnamese government detains blogger following post listing deaths under police custody
- Blogger Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quynh (“Me Nam,” or “Mother Mushroom”) was arrested on charges of propagandizing against the state, which carries a sentence of up to 12 years in prison.
- Quynh’s posts included a report on more than 30 civilians who had died in police custody, which roiled a government largely intolerant of criticism.
- She had previously been arrested in 2009 for receiving funding from Viet Tan, an activist group based in California.
“Vietnam Arrests Mother Mushroom, a Top Blogger, for Criticizing Government” (The New York Times)
“Vietnam detains blogger after police custody deaths post” (Reuters)
“Dissident blogger faces prison in Vietnam” (Deutsche Welle)
(Image Credit: Jonas Gratzer/Civil Rights Defenders, via The New York Times)
Political activists muzzled in Vietnam during visit by President Obama
- Several activists reported having been detained or otherwise barred from meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama during his visit to Hanoi.
- President Obama met with a group of civil society leaders and spoke to ongoing concerns over the suppression of free expression and assembly in the country.
- International human rights groups estimate more than 100 political prisoners languish in Vietnamese prisons, while most of the more than 100 who attempted to run as independents in recent elections were excluded from the ballot.
“As Obama Presses Vietnam on Rights, Activists Are Barred From Meeting” (The New York Times)
“Obama prods Vietnam on rights after activists stopped from meeting him” (Reuters)
“In shadow of Obama’s visit, Vietnam cracked down on protests over dead fish” (The Washington Post)
(Image Credit: Kham/Reuters, via The Washington Post)
Vietnam parliament elects first woman chair
- Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan became the country’s first parliament chairwoman, the fourth-highest government office.
- Legislators lauded the historic moment and noted the ongoing push for 30% of the parliament’s seats to be occupied by women.
- Her election was expected after she was re-elected to the 19-member Politburo within the Communist Party, the lead decision-making body in the country.
“Vietnam has first chairwoman of parliament” (Thanh Nien News)
“Vietnam elects first woman to lead parliament” (Deutsche Welle)
“Vietnam Elects First Chairwoman of Parliament” (AP via ABC News)
(Image Credit: Ngoc Thang/Thanh Nien)
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