Saturday, March 14, 2009

Vietnam an "enemy of the internet"

Reporters without Borders issued a report March 12, Enemies of the Internet, in which it described efforts worldwide to suppress the free use of internet. It singled out Vietnam along with eleven other nations for their suppression: Burma, China, Cuba, Egypt, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. It said these countries "have all transformed their Internet into an Intranet in order to prevent their population from accessing ‘undesirable’ online information... All these countries distinguish themselves not only by their ability to censor online news and information but also by their virtually systematic persecution of troublesome Internet users.."

The report says overall 70 cyber-dissidents are imprisoned around the world, China having the most, followed by Vietnam. Vietnamese imprisoned for dissident activities over the internet include Nguyen Van Dai (aka Dieu Cay), Nguyen Dao, Le Nguyen Sang, Nguyen Bac Truyen, Le Thi Cong Nhan, and Tran Quoc Hien.

The report also noted increased efforts to control blogs through repressive legislation. For example:

Circular n°7, came into force on 20 January 2009, which is designed to control blogs and their content. It is now illegal for a blogger to post articles under another identity. Blogs can only carry strictly personal information (Article 1) and it is banned to “put out press articles, literary works or other publications banned by the press law” (Article 2). Moreover, every six months, at the request of the authorities, hosts must make a report on the activities of their customers including the number of blogs they run and their statistics as well as details of blogs that violate rules established by the host (Article 6). For Deputy Minister of Information and Communications, Do Quy Doan, “Bloggers are supervised to prevent them from entering into illegality or putting out false information: criticising the fatherland, the work of constructing the country,

Source: Reporters without Borders March 12; for full report in PDF format click here.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home