Activists in Vietnam land dispute jailed for criticising government on social media

Two Vietnamese activists have been jailed for social media content material a couple of violent clash with the authorities that resulted within the deaths of four folks. According to an AFP report, violence broke out as activist villagers have been protesting plans to build a army airport on their land.
Officials had been trying to erect a fence at Dong Tam commune on the outskirts of Hanoi in January 2020, after they had been confronted by villagers armed with “grenades, petrol bombs and knives”. three police officers and a villager were killed in the clash.
Yesterday, a court within the Vietnamese capital sentenced to Trinh Ba Phuong 10 years and Nguyen Thi Tam to six years for posting concerning the clash on Facebook. The pair have been discovered responsible of, “making, storing, distributing or propagating data and documents aimed at opposing the Socialist Republic of Vietnam”.
The government-controlled Vietnam News Agency says the social media content posted by the activists “distorted and fabricated the situation taking place in Dong Tam commune, defamed the people’s authorities, incited individuals to oppose the authorities”. The authorities in Vietnam adopt a zero-tolerance policy to social media content material that criticises the federal government.
In May, Phuong’s mom and brother had been additionally given prison sentences, with each receiving eight years for posting in regards to the occasion. Now have appealed and the hearing is scheduled for this month. In September final year, 2 males found responsible of killing the 3 law enforcement officials were sentenced to demise by a Hanoi courtroom . Another 27 people have additionally been convicted.
AFP reviews that disputes over land are a frequent occurrence in Vietnam, as folks and organisations with power and money make land grabs. Yesterday’s sentencing of Phuong and Tam comes a day after Pham Doan Trang, a distinguished journalist who campaigns for press freedom and civil liberties, was jailed for 9 years.
Both the British and American governments have condemned the conviction, with US State Department spokesman Ned Price issuing an announcement calling for her to be freed.
“The United States calls on the Vietnamese government to release Trang and to permit all individuals in Vietnam to precise their views freely and without worry of retaliation.”

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