Vietnam: Professor detained, fears for health

English PEN is seriously concerned about reports that professor and internet writer Vu Van Hung is in failing health, and has been removed from his prison cell to an unknown location.

 

According to our information, Vu Van Hung was arrested on 18 September 2008, and his home was searched by Security Police officers. At the time, his family was told he would be charged under Article 88 of the Penal Code for ‘Conducting propaganda against the Socialist Republic of Vietnam’, but no charges have yet been made known. Vu Van Hung, aged 43, had been held at camp B14, district Thanh Liet Thanh Tri, Ha Noi, since 19 September 2008.

 

On 23 January 2008 Vu Van Hung’s wife met with newly amnestied prisoners, released on the Lunar New Year. They had recently shared Vu Van Hung’s prison cell and reported serious concerns for his health and well-being following a month-long hunger strike recently he had staged to protest alleged ill-treatment by other inmates and by interrogators. He has reportedly been hospitalised several times in recent weeks, and has now been taken from his prison cell to an undisclosed location, apparently as a result of his failing health. His whereabouts remain unknown and concerns for his welfare are mounting.   

 

English PEN is seeking information about Vu Van Hung’s whereabouts as a matter of urgency, and assurances of his well being. We urge that he is given full access to all necessary medical care and family visits.

 

In a separate case, English PEN has received confirmation of the release of journalist and internet writer Huynh Nguyen Dao (pen name: Huynh Viet Lang), after serving a two and a half-year prison sentence. He was arrested on 15 August 2006 on charges of ‘conducting propaganda against the Socialist Republic of Vietnam’. Huynh Nguyen Dao was released on 17 February 2009.

 

For the BBC’s country profile on Vietnam:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/country_profiles/1243338.stm
 
Please send appeals:

 

• Expressing serious concern for the health of dissident writer Vu Van Hung, and seeking information about his whereabouts as a matter of urgency.
• Urging that Vu Van Hung is given full access to all necessary medical care and family visits.
• Welcoming the release of journalist and internet writer Huynh Nguyen Dao, and calling for the immediate and unconditional release of all those detained for the peaceful exercise of their right to free expression in Vietnam, in accordance with Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Vietnam is a signatory.

 

Appeals to:

 

His Excellency Nguyên Minh Triêt
President of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam
C/o Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Hanoi
Socialist Republic of Vietnam

 

Nguyên Tân Dung
Prime Minister
1 Hoang Hoa Tham Street
Hanoi
Socialist Republic of Vietnam

 

Lê Doan Hop

Minister of Culture and Information
1 Hoang Hoa Tham Street
Hanoi
Socialist Republic of Vietnam

 

Please note that there are no fax numbers available for the Vietnamese authorities, so you may wish to ask the diplomatic representative for Vietnam in the UK to forward your appeals.

 

His Excellency Tran Quang Hoan  
Embassy of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam
12 – 14 Victoria Road
W8 5RD
United Kingdom

 

It would also be advantageous to ask the UK representatives in Vietnam to intervene in the case.

 

Ambassador Mark Kent
Central Building
4th floor
31 Hai Ba Trung
Hanoi

Email: behanoi@hn.vnn.vn

 

Originally posted with the url: www.englishpen.org/writersinprison/bulletins/vietnamprofessordetainedfearsforhealth/

About English PEN staff

This content is published by the English PEN staff.

View all posts by English PEN staff →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *