In an open letter, The 88 Project and 12 international human rights organizations are calling for Vice President Kamala Harris to challenge the Vietnamese government over the treatment and continued imprisonment of persecuted democracy activist Tran Huynh Duy Thuc during her upcoming visit to Vietnam.
Tran Huynh Duy Thuc is currently carrying out his second hunger strike in less than a year in protest against his continued incarceration after being convicted of attempting to overthrow the government. In 2010, Thuc was given a 16-year prison sentence for writing online articles advocating multi-party democracy.
Thuc is protesting as he has been unsuccessfully calling for the Supreme Court to review his case for the past three years. The Court has not even acknowledged receiving his request.
Thuc’s health has deteriorated dramatically due to his ongoing hunger strike protests, but he is prepared to die as he “can no longer accept being so illogically imprisoned….” Thuc’s daughter recently told The 88 Project that during his most recent hunger strike he had been “on the edge of death”.
Thuc was imprisoned for nothing more than expressing his political opinions, despite the fact that the Vietnamese Constitution guarantees freedom of speech. We implore Vice President Harris to join us in calling for Tran Huynh Duy Thuc to be released immediately, and without the condition of exile, which is sometimes forced upon prisoners of conscience. It is essential that action is taken quickly, before it is too late.
Please find the letter in Vietnamese here.
Please find the letter in English here.
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