Vietnam: Independent journalist taken away by the regime according to RSF sources

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) calls on the Vietnamese regime to immediately release independent journalist Huy Duc, who was reportedly taken away by state security agents just a few days after publishing articles on the country’s current political turmoil.

Vietnamese independent journalist and political commentator Truong Huy San, also known as Huy Duc, was taken away by state security agents in Hanoi on 1 June 2024 according to RSF's sources. On that day, Huy Duc failed to appear at an academic conference at which he was due to speak. His Facebook account, which gathered over 350,000 subscribers, has also been taken down since his disappearance. To date, the regime hasn’t issued a statement to confirm his arrest.

“The articles of independent journalist Huy Duc are an invaluable source of information enabling the Vietnamese public to access censored information by the Hanoi regime. We call on the Vietnamese authorities to immediately release this journalist and to reinstall his Facebook page.

Cédric Alviani
RSF Asia-Pacific Bureau Director

A few days before his disappearance, Huy Duc published several Facebook articles about current Vietnam’s political turmoil. A veteran journalist born in 1962, he worked for various Vietnamese leading newspapers, where he exposed abuses of power by officials, before being dismissed in 2009 for his critical tone. He later specialised in publishing articles about Vietnam politics on blogs and on social media, such as Facebook. In 2012, he published the book ‘The Winning Side’, which recounts the recent political history of Vietnam. 

Since 2016, the secretary general of the Communist Party of Vietnam, Nguyen Phu Trong, has stepped up the crackdown on the right to information in the country. Journalists critical of the regime are regularly accused of disseminating ‘propaganda against the state’ or ‘abusing democratic freedoms’ and can be sentenced to up to twenty years in prison. In 2021 prominent journalist and writer Pham Doan Trang, RSF press freedom prize laureate, was sentenced to nine years in jail for “anti-state propaganda”.

Vietnam ranks 174th out of 180 countries and territories, at the bottom of the 2024 RSF World Press Freedom Index, and is among the world’s worst jailers of journalists.

174/ 180
Score : 22.31
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