Target: Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung
Goal: Obtain medical care for political prisoner
Vietnamese human rights defender, Ho Thi Bich Khuong, is currently serving a five-year prison sentence for “conducting propaganda” against the regime. There are reports coming out of the camp in which she is being held that she has been beaten severely by fellow inmates. Four prisoners allegedly assaulted her face, stomach, and genital area. The reasoning behind the attack is unknown and there are no suspects in custody.
The beating has produced severe abdominal pain and bruising and has forced her into critical condition in the prison clinic. She also is suffering from pain resulting from an untreated broken arm that she suffered while under police supervision. The prison medical center is woefully out of date and undersupplied. She must be allowed to transfer to an intensive care medical center.
Ho Thi Bich Khuong has been involved in activism in Vietnam since the mid-1980’s when she was arrested for speaking out after being evicted from her food stall. She has started a blog and published numerous stories of mistreatment at the hands of the police. This has caused her arrest on numerous occasions. In December 2011, the Provincial People’s Court sentenced her to five years imprisonment and three years of probation on release.
Prison conditions in Vietnam are severe and prisoners are often underfed and do not receive adequate medical care. Reports by former prisoners of conscience in Vietnamese prisons say that political prisoners are often subjected to isolation, which can lead to increased incidences of ill treatment from guards as well as the prison population.
By allowing such treatment of prisoners, the government of Vietnam is adding to a long list of human rights abuses they are responsible for. Sign this petition to ensure Ho Thi Bich Khuong’s safety and demand that she receive medical care that will guarantee that her health and wellbeing are tended to.
Dear Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung,
I demand that political prisoner Ho Thi Bich Khuong receive the medical attention that she desperately needs. Having been attacked by four prisoners in November, she is now suffering from extreme stomach pain as well as the effects of a broken arm that has gone untreated for the past year.
She must be allowed to transfer to a medical center outside of the prison that is capable of treating her injuries. By denying proper medical care to a prisoner of conscience, Vietnam is signaling to the world that it has no intention of safe guarding free speech or other simple liberties.
Release Ho Thi Bich Khuong to a legitimate medical center outside of prison and ensure that her health is restored. By doing this, Vietnam can begin the process of rebuilding its human rights reputation in the eyes of the international community.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Jorge Lascar via Fotopedia