Reporter – Internet Radio Rallying for Democracy: Kind regards to Do Nam Hai, the democracy activist and dissident, is here for an interview today.
Do Nam Hai: Greetings and welcome to the listeners of Radio Rallying for Democracy. I am Do Nam Hai, speaking from Saigon, Việtnam.
Reporter: At the beginning of this interview, can you tell the listeners why next to Doctor Nguyen Dan Que you are the second person to sign the Announcement on the tragic and mysterious death of Mrs. Dang Thi Kim Lieng?
Do Nam Hai: On 08 Aug, 2012, it means nine days after the death of Mrs. Dang Thi Kim Lieng, the mother of the blogger Ta Phong Tan, who is currently imprisoned under the Vietnamese Regime, the Announcement, which spoke about her death, was widely transferred over the internet by dozens of people, both in Vietnam and abroad. Your listeners can go to the web address, which is in both English and Vietnamese, for more information:
From some dozens of supporters, this announcement had increased to hundreds just a few days later. In my opinion, anyone with conscience will feel very touched and indignant about the tragic and mysterious death of Mrs. Lieng.
Doctor Nguyen Dan Que and those people initiated it again to sound the alarm about the excessive actions of the security force of Vietnamese government. The government gives the security force the power to do whatever it can, no matter how cruel or unlawful as long as they subdue dissents in the country. Blogger Ta Phong Tan is one of typical victims of such abuses. In addition to her arrest, the police repeatedly coerced and harassed her family for years.
Reporter: Sir, in the Announcement, what are the conditions that the spiritual leaders; civilians; patriots; intellectuals and people struggling for freedom, human rights both abroad and inside the country have asked of the Vietnamese government?
Do Nam Hai: After raising awareness about what happened during and after the death of Mrs. Lieng, it caught the attention of people both in and outside Vietnam, including the powerful voice of the media and individuals; human rights organisations; diplomats; internationals. etc. The Announcement raises three issues demanding that the Vietnamese government must:
- Investigate the cause of her death and provide an answer to all: is this clearly a self-immolation? If not clearly proven, the people have the right to doubt Mrs. Lieng’s death in different ways, such as the authorities set the stage as the self-immolation to mislead public opinion. The authorities must forcefully punish those who directed and harassed Mrs. Lieng. Crimes must be punished! All actions to hide the truth and cover up crimes will be severely condemned and rejected by people.
- Release immediately and unconditionally Ta Phong Tan, Nguyen Van Hai, Phan Thanh Hai and other prisoners of conscience being detained unlawfully.
- Respect universal values of human rights and democracy which Vietnam has signed with international organizations, allowing the people of Vietnam to take control of their own destiny, to eliminate corrupt officials and stop China invaders!
Reporter: Do you think the Vietnamese government will meet the conditions they have been asked for, or will they still keep a completely silence like they have done? In that case, how should we react?
Do Nam Hai: It can be confirmed that, till now, the Vietnamese authorities have never responded to the justified demands of voices in Vietnam, and I think this time will receive the same. However, the signatories of the Announcement have a different target. That is an awakening of the nation’s conscience and the human rights situation in Vietnam is being severely violated by the Vietnamese authorities. Thereby, we build and develop gradually the growing national forces in order to fight for a real democracy, along with more practical and effective supports of the world communities. The organisations and individuals around the world have spoken in time about the death of Ms. Liêng such as the Committee to Protect Journalists; Reporters Without Borders; the International Federation of Human Rights; the World Organisation Against Torture; the United States Embassy in Hanoi; the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights at the United Nations, Geneva, Switzerland; Congresswoman Ms. Loretta Sanchez and political circles in Europe, Australia and America.
Even if the Vietnam authorities still keeps silence and ignores the legitimate demands of the Announcement as they had done before, the campaign will certainly not stop, but will continue increasing more and more pressures on them. In my opinion, this is a positive process in claiming the fundamental rights of freedom for Vietnam!
Reporter: Sincere thanks to Phuong Nam – Do Nam Ha from Saigon. We wish you and your family health, peace and good fortune always.
Washington, 17 Aug, 2012, Internet Radio Rallying for Democracy.