January 16, 2012
After being unjustly imprisoned for 17 months, renowned blogger and mathematics lecturer Pham Minh Hoang has returned to his family in Saigon.
Viet Tan would like to express our appreciation to human rights defenders around the world who tirelessly advocated for Pham Minh Hoang’s release. We particularly thank the French authorities for their continued attention to the case.
Though released from jail, Pham Minh Hoang still faces three years of administrative detainment. Just as Pham Minh Hoang never should have be been arrested for his peaceful political activities, there is no justification for his continued persecution. He should be free to resume his life as a free member of society.
In a landmark ruling in 2011, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention declared that Vietnamese national law, and in particular Article 79 of the Vietnamese penal code, must be consistent with international norms set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Simply arresting an individual for membership in a pro-democracy party is in violation of his rights and freedoms recognized under the UDHR and International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
While we rejoice for Pham Minh Hoang’s early release from jail, we are reminded of countless prisoners of conscience still languishing in Vietnam. Viet Tan will continue to work for the freedom of all Vietnamese imprisoned for practicing their faith, expressing their views or undertaking peaceful political activities.
Contact: Duy Hoang +1.202.470.0845