US Department of State: The Conviction of Eight Members of the Hien Phap Group in Vietnam

Washington, DC (STL.News)  Press Statement By Morgan Ortagus, Department Spokesperson

The U.S. government is deeply concerned about the Vietnam’s conviction and sentencing of eight members of the Hien Phap civil society organization in Vietnam to more than 40 years in prison.

Although we have seen the Government of Vietnam take some positive steps on human rights in certain areas in Vietnam over the past few years, we are troubled about the growing trend of arrests of and harsh sentences for peaceful activists since early 2016.  The United States calls on Vietnam to release all those who have been unjustly detained and to allow all individuals in Vietnam to express their views freely, without fear of retaliation.

Free and open societies around the world are strengthened when individuals exercise their right to freedom of expression.  We urge the Vietnamese government to ensure its actions are consistent with the human rights provisions of Vietnam’s constitution and its international obligations and commitments.

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