Many Vietnamese Protestors Say They Were Beaten in Custody, Numerous Others Still Held

Peaceful protestors in HCM City on June 10

Defend the Defenders, June 11, 2018


While many protestors are still held in police stations in many Vietnamese localities, the freed demonstrators have said that they were brutally beaten in custody after being detained on June 10.

In response to the nation-scale demonstrations against the two bills on Special Economic Zones and Cyber Security on Sunday, Vietnam’s security forces launched brutal crackdown on peaceful protestors, using tear gas, water cannon and batons to disperse them in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Danang, Nha Trang and Binh Thuan, and other locations.

Hundreds of protestors have been arrested and many others were brutally beaten with severe injuries on their bodies, citizen journalists have reported.

In Hanoi, where fewer numbers of activists rallied on streets compared to HCM City and Nha Trang, police quickly dispersed small groups gathering in the city’s center, and detained dozens of them. After many hours holding them, police released them on afternoon.

However, Hanoi police arrested a group of nearly ten activists when they were in a cafeteria after making a rally by their motorbikes. In the Trung Tu ward police station, Mrs. Nguyen Thuy Hanh and her fellows were barbarically beaten by police officers. They were released in early hour of June 11, with deformed faces and other severe injuries on their heads and bodies.

In HCM City, there were tens of thousands of local residents gathered in some places to protest the two bills. Many of protestors were female and elderly. The large-scale demonstrations continued until late hours of Sunday although many activists have been detained by security forces. Most of the detainees were beaten, and interrogated in custody. They were forced to admit of causing public disorders before being released.

In Binh Thuan, in response to police’s brutality, local protestors used stones and bricks to attack heavily-equipped police. The peaceful demonstrations turned into violent in which people occupied some government buildings in Phan Thiet town. The government sent special units of army and police to deal with the uprising and the number of arrests are expected