05/27/2013, 00.00
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Vietnamese blogger arrested, Hanoi continues to repress dissidents

Authorities in Da Nang have arrested the famous blogger and activist Duy Nhat Truong and brought him to the capital for "questioning". He is accused of postig blogs criticizing the regime, single party rule and the appointment of new heads of governments and institutions. So far in 2013, Vietnam has jailed 38 people for "crimes against the state."

Hanoi (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The Vietnamese authorities, in a new crackdown on dissent, have arrested a famous blogger for a number of articles published on the internet critical of the one-party government led by the Communist Party. His arrest comes a few days after the confirmation of judgments on appeal against a group of activists (mostly Catholic) on charges of "subversion" against the state, in the context of the proceedings, the judges stated that "every request of pluralism [and multiparty rule] is against the law. "

Truong Duy Nhat, 49, was arrested yesterday at his home in coastal Danang city a coastal town in south-central Vietnam. The security forces escorted him to Vietnam's capital Hanoi for questioning.

The government newspaper Tuoi Tre reports that the activist must answer for "abusing democratic freedoms to infringe on the interests of the state", a charge that could result in a maximum seven years in jail.

An active voice within the national media landscape since 2011, he is famous for having given birth to a popular blog titled "A Different Viewpoint." His writings offer a different view than the official press, controlled by the authorities and he is accused of fomenting "debates marked by hatred." Since his arrest his blog has been blocked by authorities.

In April, he published an article calling on the Vietnamese leadership to resign en masse, because "the time has come for the appointment of a new prime minister and a new party secretary." He called for the radical change to help solve the nation's economic and political crisis, the result of years of bad governance.

In Vietnam, the authorities' repression of bloggers activists and dissidents continues.  They have been calling for the end of the hegemony of a single party, to the point of launching a petition in which setting out a legal basis for the institutional reforms. So far in 2013, Hanoi has arrested at least 38 activists for crimes "against the state", based on "generic" and "vague" norms according to a pro human rights groups as, as well as functional repression.


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