Target: President Truong Tan Sang
Goal: Release all prisoners of conscience
Vietnam has approved the early release of several prisoners of conscience who were arrested for expressing their pro-democracy beliefs. However while this is a small victory, there are at least 70 other prisoners of conscience wasting away in Vietnam’s prisons. Many of these people have not committed a violent crime, but broke the country’s laws of expressing views that were not communist. Sign this petition and urge the president to release all prisoners of conscience who were imprisoned for simply stating their views.
Nguyen Tien Trung, Vi Duc Hoi, Cu Huy Ha Vu, and Dinh Dang Dinh were recently released, three of which were released in the same week. While their release moves freedom of expression forward, human rights groups will continue to press the country to acknowledge freedom of speech and expression. Tien Trung is a 30 year old IT engineer who is a blogger and pro-democracy activist. In 2010, he was found guilty of “attempting to overthrow the people’s administration.” He was charged with his crimes when Tien Trung and his friends formed a group meant to encourage youths to discuss democracy and political reform.
Duc Hoi, age 56, was released a year and a half earlier than expected. A writer and a former member of the Communist Party, he was expelled when he called for democratic reform. He was later jailed and arrested for eight years when he was using the internet to promote democracy. His sentence was later reduced to five years in an appeal.
Ha Vu is a famous dissident of Vietnam and he is a human rights lawyer. He was recently released from a seven year prison sentence. He immediately immigrated to the United States where he is living in voluntary exile. Dang Dinh, while he was released, died a month after his death. He was wrongfully incarcerated when he made a petition protesting a mining project and while in jail he was diagnosed with stomach cancer.
Many prisoners of conscience are imprisoned because they express pro-democratic ideals. Many of these prisoners do not have a fair trial, and are mistreated and abused while incarcerated. Sign this petition and urge the Vietnamese government to release all prisoners who were imprisoned for expressing their opinion. The government should listen to all opinions and stop denying their people the right to freedom of speech.
Dear President Truong Tan Sang,
I am writing to you about the plight of at least 70 prisoners of conscience who are wasting away in your country’s prisons. These intellectual people have a right to expressing their opinions and views. I understand there are laws prohibiting your citizens from speaking out, but you have no right to deny them these rights.
I demand that you release all prisoners at once. None of them have done anything violent, merely protested or spoke their views. As a government you should be willing to listen your citizens, not imprison them when their ideals don’t align with your agendas. Please show your support for human rights and grant them all an early release.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Presidencia Peru via Wikimedia