U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Office of the Spokesperson
February 18, 2014
STATEMENT BY JEN PSAKI, SPOKESPERSON
Vietnamese Government’s Decision to Uphold Le Quoc Quan Conviction
We are deeply concerned by the Vietnamese government’s decision to uphold the conviction of human rights lawyer and blogger Le Quoc Quan to 30 months in prison on tax evasion charges. The use of tax laws by Vietnamese authorities to imprison government critics for peacefully expressing their political views is disturbing. This conviction appears to be inconsistent with the right to freedom of expression and Vietnam’s obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and commitments reflected in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. We call on the government to release prisoners of conscience and allow all Vietnamese to peacefully express their political views.