Nguyen Tuong Thuy

Current Status: Pre-trial detention

Photo of Nguyen Tuong Thuy

Other Names: Nguyễn Tường Thụy

Date of Birth: 1952

Gender: M

Ethnicity: Kinh

Occupation: Veteran

Areas of Activism:

  • Democracy
  • Freedom of expression
  • Press

Known Affiliations:

  • Independent Journalists Association of Vietnam
  • Brotherhood for Democracy

September 2020:

Two members of the unsanctioned Independent Journalist Association of Vietnam (IJAVN) had their pre-trial detentions extended without their families being informed. Pham Chi Thanh, arrested in May, had his detention extended by four months on charges of engaging in “anti-state propaganda”. The organization’s vice-president, Nguyen Tuong Thuy, also arrested in May and similarly charged, may also have had his detention extended without notice.

Details - Background, History of Activism.

Nguyen Tuong Thuy lives in Hanoi.

Thuy is the Vice President of the Independent Journalist Association of Vietnam. He is also a member of the Brotherhood for Democracy. He writes about human rights issues and has reported on activists, including Dung Truong, who was severely beaten by plainclothes police in March 2018. He advocated for press freedom in the US at a briefing in Washington DC in 2014. Thuy has been harassed and targeted for his activism on multiple occasions in recent years, including having his private home attacked and being physically assaulted by unknown thugs, potentially plainclothes police, in 2015.

March 8, 2018: barred from leaving his home to meet with UN officials

Travel restriction
March 8, 2018
Public security
Thanh Tri district, Ha Noi (map)

freedom of movement

Blogger Nguyen Tuong Thuy was blocked from leaving his house to meet with other local activists and representatives from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. About 20 officers surrounded Thuy’s home to prevent him from leaving, starting the evening prior.

March 13, 2020: harassed by public security officers

Police summons
March 13, 2020
Public security
Thanh Xuan district, Hanoi city (map)

respect of privacy, family, home, and correspondence

Nguyen Tuong Thuy was summoned by the security investigating agency of Ha Noi's public security force on March 13, 2020. The reason, as written in the document, is related to the high-profile case of Pham Chi Dung, a prominent dissident journalist and writer who was arrested on November 21, 2019, by the public security forces of Ho Chi Minh City and charged under Article 117 of Vietnam 2015 Criminal Code for “producing, storing, and disseminating” documents opposing the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. Thuy is another high-profile activist with a long history of activism. He has been harassed and targeted for his activism on multiple occasions over many years, from his 2013 arrest to his 2018 assault. He declined to meet with the agency, citing the coronavirus outbreak and his health condition.

Arrested May 23, 2020. Charged under Art. 117 (2015 Code).

May 23, 2020
  • Art. 117 (2015 Code)
Ministry of Public Security
His apartment in Hanoi (map)
  • freedom from arbitrary arrest or detention
  • liberty and security of the person
  • freedom of association
  • Defend the Defenders
  • Committee to Protect Journalists
  • Reporters Without Borders
  • Independent Journalists Association of Vietnam

On the morning of May 23, 2020, Nguyen Tuong Thuy was arrested and his apartment searched by the public security of Hanoi City. Thuy, 70, is a veteran but left the Veteran Associations of Vietnam. He is currently the vice president of the Independent Association of Journalists; Pham Chi Dung, its president, was arrested last year. Thuy is charged under Article 117 of the 2015 Criminal Code for alleged propaganda against the state. Thuy had been questioned many times about his connections to Dung, including in March 2020. He was taken from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City after his arrest. 

Several groups released statements calling for the release of Pham Thanh and Nguyen Tuong Thuy, well-known activists who were both arrested during the week of May 18. The Vietnam Human Rights Network and Defend the Defenders urged the government to end the crackdown against the Independent Journalists Association of Vietnam. The Committee to Protect Journalists also called for their releases, saying that “Vietnam must stop treating independent journalists as enemies of the state, and must allow the press to work freely and without fear of trumped-up charges and prison time.” The head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk said of the arrests: “The fact that the government has detained these two journalists, both respected former Communist Party members who have become scathing critics of the party’s ossification, speaks volumes about the feverishness at the head of the party as it prepares for its 21st five-yearly congress in six months’ time.”

Profile last updated: 2020-10-05 01:38:39

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