The Vietnamese Authorities’ Violation on Our Family’s Civil Liberties and Human Rights

The family of writer Huỳnh Ngọc Tuấn, Huỳnh Khánh Vy, Huỳnh Trọng Hiếu and Huỳnh Thục Vy.

The family of writer Huỳnh Ngọc Tuấn, Huỳnh Khánh Vy, Huỳnh Trọng Hiếu and Huỳnh Thục Vy.

Translated by Lê Anh Hùng (Defend the Defenders)

Quang Nam, 31 Mar, 2013

I am Huynh Trong Hieu, aged 24, currently living in Tam Ky City, Quang Nam province; my home phone number is 05103858736. I shall present here those harassments that the Vietnamese authorities have inflicted upon our family so far.

On 27 October 1992, my father, Huynh Ngoc Tuan, was arrested. All of his documents and literary manuscripts were confiscated. On 2 April 1993, the authorities brought him to Quang Nam-Da Nang Provincial Court, sentencing him to 10 years in prison plus 4 years under probation with charge of “propagandizing against the State”.

Exactly ten years later, my father was released from prison, but he was still under administrative probation for four years in the village, repeatedly having to “work” with Quang Nam provincial security force. During the time in prison, my father was suffered from multidrug-resistant pulmonary tuberculosis (due to mistreatment) and diabetes, so he is in very poor health now. In spite of that, after his release from prison, he is repeatedly “invited” to work with security force.

On 8 November 2011, dozens of policemen rush to our house, seizing all of our communication gadgets (0102) (confiscated possessions being written down in the decision on the confiscation of exhibits and means of the violation of the law).

On 2 December 2011, the authorities issued three administrative decisions, imposing a fine of 100 million VND on my father (0102), a fine of 85 million VND on my sister Huynh Thuc Vy (0102) and another fine of 85 million on me (Huynh Trong Hieu(0102for “violating administrative rules in the field of information technology”, because my father used the Internet to post those articles that they claimed as “against the Party and the State of Vietnam.” In addition to handing these penalty decisions to us, a group up to 100 policemen, including traffic police, blocked all roads leading to my aunt’s home, where my father and my two sister and I live with her, rush to the house to hit and insult my paternal grandmother, my two aunts, my father, my two sisters and I in the presence of our neighbours. They even took 3,000USD of my aunt away without being noticed; only after they retreated we discovered that.

The authorities confiscate PCs at my home (photo of Huỳnh Ngọc Lễ)

Additionally, they issued an enforcement decision dated 21 March 2012 on the implementation of the above penalty decisions, despite the fact that my father, together with my sister and I, had submitted a letter of appeal (0102) on these  unjust decisions. With this enforcement decision, they can suddenly rush to our house to seize our possessions to deduct from the fines. But because we live in my aunt’s house and have no assets so they had confiscated nothing except seizing our laptops repeatedly.

My father and my sister Huynh Thuc Vy were awarded Hellman/Hammett grants by Human Rights Watch (HRW) for our struggle to demand the Vietnamese government respect human rights and civil rights as stipulated in the Constitution of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam,  the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

On 16 December 2012, on behalf of my father and my sister Huynh Thuc Vy, I was to go to New York to receive the awards granted by HRW.

About 20h the same day, I was escorted by Tan Son Nhat Airport customs officers and Sai Gon security officers to an isolated room to meet a group of Quang Nam provincial security officers. The Quang Nam provincial security officers went to the Tan Son Nhat Airport to notify me of a decision prohibiting me from leaving the country on account that I, Huynh Trong Hieu, had not paid the fine of 85 million VND as imposed by the decision of penalty for “violating administrative rules in the field of information technology” which was signed by Mr Le Phuoc Thanh, Chairman of the Quang Nam Provincial People’s Committee, on 2 December 2011. That night, the Quang Nam security officers also seized my passport, which they have not returned to me yet.

This was a severe violation of Vietnamese laws as well as international conventions on human rights and civil rights – depriving citizens of the freedom of immigration for working and of the chance to study abroad. It was so unjust for an honest man who adores freedom.

After prohibiting me from leaving the country and seizing my passport, the authorities continue to harass our family. They order security officers in civilian clothes, together with many people who cooperate with them in my neighbourhood, to keep an eye on where we live and where we go, both day and night. Our family is always in the sight of the security force and informers. Sometimes, these informers conduct the work so openly and rudely that it makes our life uncomfortable, difficult and insecure.

My sisters Huynh Thuc Vy and Huynh Khanh Vy, who usually have to live as lodgers for the purpose of study or work, both have security force pressure house masters to make difficulties and dismiss them, despite the fact that they have rental contracts and even when the house master still owe Khanh Vy 3 million VND. Counting on the shield of the security force, the house master not only didn’t repay the money but also threatened to hit and kill both Khanh Vy and her husband.

They even threw poisonous snakes into our house in order to wreak disaster upon us. They did this intentionally and in a flagrantly open way so as to send us the message of their punishment. When we went to a police station to work with them, accusing them of throwing poisonous snakes into our house, they said: “What you do makes your neighbours hate you so much that they want to kill you.” These were the words coming from the mouth of the security officer named Huynh Ngoc Truyen of Quang Nam province.

Another case of human rights and civil rights recently happened to my sisterHuynh Khanh Vy when she prepared a dossier to apply for a scholarship from the Australian government for the school years 2013-2015. According to the class head teacher of Huynh Khanh Vy, the Da Nang Municipal Public Security questioned her and sent an official letter to Duy Tan University (where Khanh Vy studied), asking them not to use the school’s stamp in the letter recommending student Huynh Khanh Vy as a candidate for scholarship. This was the explanation given by Huynh Khanh Vy’s class head teacher Tran Thi Thu for her withdrawal of writing the letter recommending Huynh Khanh Vy as a candidate for the Australian government’s scholarship, although she had nicely promised to help.

After that, the Da Nang security force instructed the police of Thuan Phuoc ward, Da Nang, to check temporary residence status of Huynh Khanh Vy and her husband, Do Minh Duc, who were living as lodgers at 17 Mai Lao Bang street, Thuan Phuoc ward, Hai Chau district. They pressured the house master to dismiss Huynh Khanh Vy while she had just given birth to a child for 15 days and the child got infected and was in Hoan My hospital (Da Nang) for treatment.

Recently, on 27 March 2013, a group named Viet Thuc Brotherhood in USA sent us a box of medicine for the treatment of ordinary diseases. The unusual thing was that the Vietnam Post didn’t deliver the gift directly to us but to one of our neighbours and he brought it to us.

Opening the box, we were extremely surprised and angry because someone had opened it. The bottles and boxes inside were all opened and in a state as if the medicine was already in use.

This was not the first time we were treated like this, it happens whenever we receive gifts, only with different degrees of damage. We went to the Post Office to complaint but they just kept ignoring, even didn’t bother to reply us.

Although the opened medicine was still in full, we resigned ourselves to giving it up: we have no confidence to use it.

At present, though we live in our country but still we are surrounded, sanctioned and harassed in all forms, losing all rights as a citizen, from the freedom of residence to the right to travel abroad (even when we only go for the purpose of study or receiving international awards) to the right to seek a better life; our assets and life security are not respected.

Most alarmingly, the police has tacitly instructed leaders of public hospitals to harass us if we go there for diagnosis and treatment. To single out one of many cases that we have not fully informed: In 2011 and 2012, my sister Huynh Thuc Vy had to go to hospital for emergency treatment once for erosive gastritis and once for intestinal infectious disease. Quang Nam Provincial Hospital did nothing for her, they just left her in pain. Finally, we decided to take her to Hoan My hospital (Da Nang) that night.

For security and health reasons, we no longer dare to go to state-run hospitals for diagnosis and treatment. In case of emergency treatment, we can only go to the private hospital Hoan My in Da Nang while facing financial and vehicle difficulties to cover the length of 80km from Quang Nam to Da Nang.

Our space and conditions for existence have been narrowed by the authorities systematically; our security is under threats.

We hereby appeal for the concerns and help from the international community; human rights organizations and governments of liberal and democratic nations should voice their concern over our basic rights, including the right to life without discrimination, threat or attempted assassination.

We demand that the Vietnamese authorities respect our family’s rights to life and the pursuit of happiness, return my passport so that I can exercise my rights without any limitation by anyone, put an end to every kinds of harassment and threat, treat us fairly according to the spirit of the law, and let us enjoy every civil rights without any kind of permission. Most important are inviolable rights to health and security for each member of my family.

Huynh Trong Hieu

Source: Defend the Defenders

5 responses to “The Vietnamese Authorities’ Violation on Our Family’s Civil Liberties and Human Rights

  1. Pingback: Huỳnh Trọng Hiếu – Nhà cầm quyền CSVN vi phạm các quyền tự do công dân và nhân quyền đối với gia đình chúng tôi | CỘNG ĐỒNG NGƯỜI VIỆT QUỐC GIA – HOA KỲ

  2. Pingback: Huỳnh Trọng Hiếu – The Vietnamese Authorities’ Violation of Our Family’s Civil Liberties and Human Rights – Nhà cầm quyền CSVN vi phạm các quyền tự do công dân và nhân quyền đối với gia đình chúng tôi | dânl

  3. Pingback: Huỳnh Trọng Hiếu – The Vietnamese Authorities’ Violation of Our Family’s Civil Liberties and Human Rights – Nhà cầm quyền CSVN vi phạm các quyền tá»± do công dân và nhân quyá»

  4. Pingback: Huỳnh Trọng Hiếu – The Vietnamese Authorities’ Violation of Our Family’s Civil Liberties and Human Rights – Nhà cầm quyền CSVN vi phạm các quyền tự do công dân và nhân quyền đối với gia đình chúng tôi | dânl

  5. Pingback: Huỳnh Trọng Hiếu – The Vietnamese Authorities’ Violation of Our Family’s Civil Liberties and Human Rights – Nhà cầm quyền CSVN vi phạm các quyền tá»± do công dân và nhân quyá»

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