March 23, 2016
We are deeply concerned by the Vietnamese government’s conviction and sentencing of bloggers Mr. Nguyen Huu Vinh (aka Anh Ba Sam) and Ms. Nguyen Thi Minh Thuy, to five and three years in prison, respectively, under Article 258 of Vietnam’s Penal Code. The use of criminal provisions by Vietnamese authorities to penalize individuals peacefully exercising their right to freedom of expression is disturbing.
These convictions appear to be inconsistent with the right to freedom of expression and freedom of the press provided for in Vietnam’s Constitution, and with Vietnam’s obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and other international commitments. We call on the government to release unconditionally these two individuals, as well as all other prisoners of conscience, and allow all Vietnamese to express their views peacefully, without fear of retribution.