Authorities successful Viet Nam must immediately release four activists jailed this week for spreading anti-State propaganda, the UN quality rights office, OHCHR, said connected Friday. 

Over a three-day period, salient quality rights defenders Trinh Ba Phoung, Nguyen Thi Tam, Do Nam Trung and independent author Pham Doan Trang, were sentenced to up to a decennary successful jail, and 5 years connected probation. 

Silence and intimidate 

Spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani said OHCHR was “deeply troubled” by the harsh sentencing of the quality rights and onshore rights defenders, who were charged under articles 88 and 117 of Viet Nam's Criminal Code. 

Meanwhile, journalist Le Trong Hung, who had announced his volition to tally for governmental bureau arsenic an independent, is facing proceedings connected 31 December on akin charges.  

“We impulse the authorities successful Viet Nam to instantly merchandise each these individuals arsenic good arsenic the galore others arbitrarily detained for exercising their rights to state of sentiment and expression,” said Ms. Shamdasani, speaking successful Geneva. 

All 5 persons were arrested successful 2020 and 2021, and OHCHR said the charges against them appeared to beryllium portion of a run to soundlessness and intimidate those who talk retired in defence of quality rights. 

‘Chilling effect’  

“All the cases travel akin worrying patterns that rise superior issues concerning the presumption of innocence, the legality of their detention, and the fairness of their trial,” Ms. Shamdasani told journalists. 

“There is prolonged incommunicado pre-trial detention, prosecution under the vaguely worded offence of ‘spreading anti-State propaganda’, denial of entree to ineligible counsel and closed trials that bash not respect planetary just proceedings standards.” 

The UN quality rights bureau has urged the Vietnamese Government to repeal each ineligible provisions that interruption cardinal freedoms.  

“Cases of this benignant lend to a clime of self-censorship successful the state and person a chilling effect connected media freedom,” said Ms. Shamdasani.  “They besides forestall radical from exercising their fundamental rights and engaging successful nationalist statement connected issues of importance.” 

Harsh sentences 

Mr. Trinh and Ms. Nguyen, some onshore rights activists, were sentenced by a tribunal in Viet Nam’s capital, Hanoi, connected Wednesday, according to media reports.   

Mr. Trinh received 10 years in situation and 5 connected probation, while Ms. Nguyen volition walk six years in prison, followed by 3 years’ probation. 

A tribunal successful bluish Viet Nam handed down a condemnation of 10 years successful prison, and 4 connected probation, to Mr. Do connected Thursday.  He was recovered blameworthy of criticizing the authorities connected societal media, according to quality reports. 

Ms. Pham, a journalist, was jailed for 9 years pursuing sentencing by a tribunal in Hanoi connected Tuesday. 

OHCHR said Mr. Le has been held since March, without entree to a lawyer and without being allowed to conscionable his family.