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Undercover in Vietnam: Special four-part series on press freedom


"Undercover in Vietnam", a special four-part series on press freedom in Vietnam by CPJ Southeast Asia Representative Shawn Crispin.

Excerpt from Part One: Bloggers play risky game of cat-and-mouse to report

When Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quynh left her home in the central coastal city of Nha Trang to cover anti-China protests a 10-hour bus ride away in southern Ho Chi Minh City, the prominent blogger disguised her appearance to evade plainclothes officials stationed nearby to monitor her meetings and movements.

Excerpt from Part Two: Reporters become martyrs for their paper's cause

In a church compound in the bustling heart of Ho Chi Minh City, journalists and editors upload the latest online edition of Redemptorist News in a secret backroom bureau. First established in 1935, the Catholic newspaper was shut down by the ruling Communist Party in 1975 after consolidating its control over the country's once divided northern and southern regions.

Excerpt from Part Three: Exile is high price reporters pay for press freedom

On December 9, 2012, mainstream journalist and sometimes blogger Pham Doan Trang was arrested while reporting on an anti-China protest in Ho Chi Minh City. She was taken to a rehabilitation camp for commercial sex workers, where she was interrogated by a group of seven officials.

Excerpt from Part Four: Room for debate frees up but bloggers remain imprisoned

Incarcerated for the past six years in poor prison conditions, Nguyen Van Hai has suffered dearly for his critical views on China. First detained on trumped up tax evasion charges in 2008, and subsequently convicted in 2012 on anti-state charges for blogging, 62-year-old Hai is currently serving a 12-year jail term that his family fears could be a death sentence in view of his declining health.

The series concludes with recommendations for the Vietnamese government and international bodies.

What other IFEX members are saying
  • Fixing the United States' human rights misstep with Vietnam

    The United States government made a mistake this month in relaxing a ban on lethal arms sales and transfers to Vietnam . . . [the move] undermines courageous activists in Vietnam and squanders important leverage that might have been used to encourage more reform.

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A recent report by the Independent Journalism Center finds that 'fake news' was a problem in the Feb 2019 elections…

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