Vietnam Free Expression Newsletter No. 41/2017 – Week of December 4-10
Greetings from The 88 Project! We are bringing you news, analysis, and actions regarding human rights and civil society in Vietnam during the week of December 4-10. We think of all political prisoners and activists at risk today as December 10 is Human Rights Day. News came out this week that the appeal trial of Tran Thi Nga will be held on December 22. Two priests were prevented from traveling abroad for “national security” reasons. Don’t miss the Vietnamese magazine’s article on the worrisome trend of cyber attacks against activists since last month. There is more news and analysis on Mekong Review – a magazine that covers Southeast Asia’s literature and politics, a rare protest of drivers in Southern Vietnam that forced the government to review charges at a toll gate, and the experience of Vietnamese citizens with corruption. Please take action for the members of the Brotherhood for Democracy who are currently being held incommunicado and need medical attention. And consider making a donation via the NOW! Campaign to support families of Vietnamese political prisoners.
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HUMAN RIGHTS & CIVIL SOCIETY
NEWS & ANALYSIS
Eluding Censors, a Magazine Covers Southeast Asia’s Literary Scene: “Mr. Bui Jones said that he started Mekong Review in Phnom Penh, the Cambodian capital, because the riverside city of 1.7 million was a magnet for talented writers who were hungry for adventures and bylines. His goal was to bring the authenticity and cultural depth to articles and reviews that he felt was lacking in coverage of Southeast Asia in major literary magazines. […] Bernice Chauly, a poet and novelist in Kuala Lumpur who directs the George Town Literary Festival, said that Mekong Review could serve the crucial function of publicizing literature from Southeast Asia that does not yet reach an international audience, and also offering a platform to writers there who feel intimidated by censors.”
Vietnam reviews toll road after rare protests: “Vietnam’s government has promised a full review of charges at a toll gate on a new road after protests there posed a rare challenge to the Communist authorities and showed signs of spreading. Charges at the Cai Lay toll road in southern Vietnam were suspended by the government on Monday after protesting drivers caused long tailbacks by paying fees in bundles of tiny denomination bills.”
Vietnam Global Corruption Barometer 2017: views and experiences from Vietnamese citizens: “Vietnamese citizens perceive police (57%), tax officials (47%) and business executives (37%) as the most corrupt groups. Notably, more people perceive business executives as corrupt than they did in 2013 (33%). […] One out of two respondents (49%) believe that government anti-corruption actions are ineffective, which significantly increases compared to that in 2013 (37%). Notably, people in rural areas seem to be more disappointed than those in urban areas.”
Please take Amnesty International’s Urgent Action for Pham Van Troi, Truong Minh Duc, and Nguyen Trung Ton. The three were arrested on July 30 under Article 79 for ties to the Brotherhood for Democracy. They are being held in incommunicado detention and need access to healthcare treatment.
And please consider making a donation via the NOW! Campaign to support families of political prisoners.
© 2017 The 88 Project