Sunday, August 11, 2013


CTV Danlambao - This afternoon, August 10, 2013, police department in Saigon has mobilized its force to surround the residence of Mr. Nguyen Bac Truyen in Saigon. The show of force means to harass and mentally terrorize Mr. Nguyen’s family after his meeting with representatives from the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the U.S. House of Representatives on the same day.

At press time, many plainclothes security agents are setting up a checkpoint in front of his redidence at 29 42rd Street, District No. 4, Saigon. The situation is so tense that police may carry out an operation tonight.

Mr. Nguyen Bac Truyen, 45, is a former prisoner of conscience, sentenced to 3 and a half years in prison for allegedly “conducting propaganda against the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.” Mr. Nguyen is also the author of a number of highly appreciated articles on Danlambao, whose content calls for promoting democracy and human rights, and speaking out for prisoners of conscience currently detained in communist prisons.

Talking to Danlambao reporter, Mr. Nguyen said: By appointment, this afternoon at 2:30 pm, August 10, 2013, he had a meeting with the delegation of the Foreign Affairs Committee of U.S. House of Representatives, including the following officials and three officials from the U.S. Embassy:

Mr. Hunter M. Strupp, an analyst for Asia Policy, Foreign Affairs Committee of U.S. House of Representatives;

Mrs. Janice V. Kaguyatan, an advisor of the Foreign Affairs Committee of U.S. House of Representatives;

Mrs. Joan O’Donnell Condon, senior assistant of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives;

The meeting lasted more than two hours and covered a wide range of issues related to the promotion of human rights in Vietnam. They also discussed the recent reports on the escalating crackdown and imprisonment of bloggers, the violations of freedom of religion, and the effects of the so-called Decree 72 on freedom of speech.

To summarize the discussions with the U.S. delegation, Mr. Nguyen Bac Truyen said briefly:

"We have never believed in any promises from the Vietnamese communist regime. In today's meeting with the U.S. delegation, I had confirmed that as long as the regime still imprisons political prisoners and prisoners of conscience, I would never believe the regime would improve the human rights situation.

The prerequisite requires the authorities must first release all political prisoners and prisoners of conscience. Secondly, they must not continue to harass or arrest dissidents. It’s meaningless if they release one or two then arrest a dozen of people.”

As a former prisoner of conscience, Mr. Nguyen voiced his opinion: "We do not care about who could get out of jail early, we would spend our time in prison accordingly to the sentence they make. The Communist regime cannot make bargain on the fate of the prisoners of conscience. We accept spending our time in prison to the very last days."

The meeting ended at about 5 pm on the same day. Upon his leaving, Mr. Nguyen Bac Truyen discovered a large crowd of plainclothes security agents outside the meeting place. At the same time, a special vehicle was waiting nearby to accommodate the arrest of people, standing aside were the familiar evil faces of security agents in Saigon, including 'big boss and small boss.'

Immediately, he carefully came back to inform the U.S. delegation his finding. Two officials of the U.S. Embassy immediately made calls for intervention. The chasing and threat carried out by security agents from police department in Saigon happened right in front of the delegation of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the U.S. House of Representatives.

After informing U.S. officials the incident, Mr. Nguyen took a taxi to get home despite the heavy presence of security agents. When he got to his mother’s house, about five plainclothes security agents were stationing outside for surveillance. The situation could become more serious tonight.

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