Police in Binh Thuan province in southern Vietnam released a Facebook user after holding him for five days to interrogate about social media posts opposing the government, the blogger said on Wednesday. .
Nguyen Van Son Trung was arrested on April 9 after the arrest of Cham ethnic poet Dong Chuong Tu, who was released on April 10 after being detained and interrogated for three days.
A third friend, Tran Duc Tin, was arrested on April 10 but was also released after several days of interrogation.
All three discussed on Facebook about the procedure to nominate independent candidates to the National Assembly and the local People’s Council of Vietnam, a political process tightly controlled by the ruling Communist Party. of the country, which thoroughly examines candidates for Party approval.
Trung was handcuffed by the police during his arrest and interrogated five days before his release, Trung told RFA Vietnam.
“During those five days, they asked me to verify the posts I posted on my Facebook account,” Trung said.
“They also wanted me to explain the discussions that my friends and I held on our group chats, including how to self-nominate People’s Councils at all levels,” he said and gave. learn more that they understand that citizens 21 years of age or older can run for council themselves.
Trung said that the police also questioned him about other Facebook groups and whether he was related to the US-based Viet Tan opposition party, a group designated by the Vietnamese authorities as a terrorist organization. Vietnamese human rights lawyer Nguyen Van Dai, currently living in exile in Germany.
One police officer slapped Trung in the head when he arrived at the police station and another slapped him three times in the ear during the interrogation, Trung said, adding that the people interrogating him came from three police departments. separate security and deny his request to see an attorney.
Speaking to RFA, Trung said that five days of interrogation worried and scared him, and that he was finally asked to sign a document written by the interrogators to prove that he worked. to them voluntarily and without being affected physically. mentally harmed.
“I also have to promise to ‘work with them’ again if they ask, and I have to promise to write my future stories ‘honestly and objectively’, Trung said.
“Those five days were so stressful that I decided to sign all the papers so I could go home,” he said.
Trung’s five days in detention violated Vietnamese law, which states that police cannot detain anyone without a detention order, unless they provide a specific reason in writing to the person on hold. keep and their families.
A detention must also not last longer than 12 hours unless it is “absolutely necessary” and must not last longer than 24 hours, as prescribed by Vietnamese law.
Over the past three months, police have arrested two other self-nominated candidates, Tran Quoc Khanh and Le Trong Hung, both from Hanoi, for “disseminating anti-State documents”, despite the central government. The central government discussed openly on the initiative “open more doors to self-nominated candidates”.
RFA Vietnam Services Report. Translation by Châu Vũ. Written in English by Richard Finney.