Party ramps up dissident arrests
Six Vietnamese activists were arrested for “attempting to overthrow the state”, a continuation of the country's recent crackdown against dissent since the 2016 leadership change. Jailed for between seven and 15 years – the longest sentence handed out for years – the activists were allegedly affiliated with the Brotherhood for Democracy group and are accused of pushing for multi-party democracy. The foreign ministry insisted “there are no so-called prisoners of conscience and no arrests of people who express their personal viewpoints”. Amnesty International claims that 97 dissidents are currently in prison in Vietnam.
Vietnamese activist Nguyen Van Tuc (second from left) facing trial for allegedly working with a pro-democracy group