The EU Heads of Mission has expresed grave concern about the arrest of lawyer Le Cong Dinh and the sanctioning of his right to peaceful exercise of freedom of expression. According to a joint press-release they are concerned about the conditions under which he is being held, apparently without access to legal counsel, and by the broadcasting on national TV and media of a 3 minute video clip of Mr Dinh supposedly reading a confession.
The EU states that they hold regular dialogue with Vietnam on human rights. It welcomes the significant progress Vietnam has made in improving economic and social conditions for its citizens, and in religious freedom. But there remain serious concerns about recent developments in the fields of civil and political rights, in particular the right to freedom of expression. The EU firmly believes that the free flow of information and the sharing of ideas are vital for the long-term sustainable development of society in Vietnam.
The EU Heads of mission has therefore asked to the Government of Vietnam to release speedily Mr Dinh and all non-violent detainees who have peacefully exercised their right to freedom of expression.