Nguyen Van Tuc
Current Status: Sentenced to prison
Other Names: Nguyễn Văn Túc
Date of Birth: May 28, 1964
Current Prison: Prison No. 6, Nghe An province
Areas of Activism:
- Human rights
- Land rights
- Bloc 8406
- Brotherhood for Democracy
On March 13, 2018, Nguyen Van Tuc’s wife, Bui Thi Re visited him and received a letter writing about his health situation. He has been suffering from many serious diseases, including hemorrhoids, a degenerative spine issue, chronic keratitis of the eye, and coronary artery disease. In addition, he also has lost weight because of his insomnia. He has been in a dangerous situation because of both health problems and inhumane treatment in prison.
Tuc is enduring mistreatment at the notorious Prison No. 6 in Nghe An province. He has been placed in a cell with a cellmate who allegedly beats Tuc in exchange for leniency from authorities. Prison authorities are also allegedly withholding food sent by Tuc’s family.
Details - History of Activism.
He has been active in human rights, pro-democracy, and maritime sovereignty activism.
Nguyen Van Tuc's profile from Front Line Defenders
Arrested September, 2008. Sentenced to 4 years in prison under Art. 88 (1999 Code). Released September 10, 2012.
- Art. 88 (1999 Code)
Arrested September 1, 2017. Sentenced to 13 years in prison under Art. 79 (1999 Code). Expected Release is September 1, 2030.
- Art. 79 (1999 Code)
Nguyen Van Tuc, a former prisoner of conscience and a member of the Brotherhood for Democracy, was arrested under Article 79 of the 1999 Criminal Code on September 1, 2017. State-owned media has confirmed the arrest. He had previously served four years in prison under Article 88 for “propaganda against the state,” from 2008 to 2012. At the time of the arrest, he was at least the sixth member of the Brotherhood for Democracy, a group co-founded by lawyer and political prisoner Nguyen Van Dai, to be arrested in recent weeks.
Authorities announced that Nguyen Van Tuc would face trial on April 10. A Brotherhood for Democracy member and former political prisoner, he had been detained for seven months without trial. He was be tried under Article 79 in Thai Binh province and had not been allowed to meet with his lawyer at the time of the announcement.
Nguyen Van Tuc was sentenced to 13 years in prison and three years of house arrest on April 10, 2018, in Thai Binh province.
Nguyen Van Tuc‘s appeal of his 13-year sentence was denied on September 14. Tuc’s wife said that he saw the trial as an opportunity to voice his continued support for peaceful activism, and she noted that his health situation has been more stable recently.
Nguyen Van Tuc’s wife, Bui Thi Re, went to visit him at Prison 6, in Nghe An province, on November 12. His multiple diseases were getting worse, however, he remained in good spirits and he gave thanks to those who are concerned about him and his family. Tuc had been recently transferred to the new prison, which is 300 km from their family’s residence, without formal notice given to his wife.
Nguyen Van Tuc was in poor health in prison, with graying hair and difficulties eating and sleeping from his heart disease. His wife reported back on his condition after a June 21 visit, stating also that Tuc lacked sufficient air ventilation in his cell.
Bui Thi Re, wife of Nguyen Van Tuc, and their son, visited Tuc in Thai Binh detention center on September 20, 2018. They reported that Nguyen Van Tuc’s health was in bad condition after the appellate trial on September 14. In particular, his cardiovascular disease was getting worse, with such a high heartbeat and blood pressure that he felt he could faint at any time. In addition, other diseases, such as a degenerative spine (or the vertebrae of the neck) and hemorrhoids, caused him even more pain. However, his spirit of courage remained. He even encouraged his son and fellow activists to turn pain into action.
Bui Thi Re, Nguyen Van Tuc’s wife, went to Thai Binh Detention Center to bring him some medication on November 8. However, the detention officer announced that Tuc had been transferred to Detention Center 6, Nghe An Province, which is 300 km from their family’s residence. When Bui Thi Re visited him on October 18, she had reported that he was in poor health. His cardiovascular disease made him faint three times in one day, each time for 15 minutes, and he was still suffering from hemorrhoids. Moreover, he cannot see clearly because of his corneal inflammation. Transferring him to a far-away prison will challenge his family's ability to visit and provide him with medication. Tuc had requested to check his health, but as of October 2018, he had not received a reply from prison authorities.
Several UN Rapporteurs released a letter expressing concern about the arrests and detentions of Nguyen Bac Truyen, Truong Minh Duc, Nguyen Trung Ton, Pham Van Troi, Nguyen Van Tuc, and Le Dinh Luong. They highlighted the issue that these arrests took place during a concerted crackdown on human rights activists and point out that Vietnam has international obligations to protect universal freedoms, such as the rights to freedom of expression and assembly.
Following the trial of human rights lawyer Nguyen Van Dai and five other activists, in which they received sentences ranging from 7-15 years in prison, and the trial of Nguyen Van Tuc mere days later, a group of UN experts released a statement questioning the Vietnamese government's motives for jailing the activists, asking for clarifications regarding their detentions and trial, and urging the government to uphold international obligations to protect human rights and release political prisoners. “We are deeply concerned at the way these peaceful campaigners have been treated and in particular over the use of Article 79 of the 1999 penal code of Viet Nam to charge and convict dissenting voices, mainly human rights defenders, especially as Article 79 carries the possibility of the death sentence or life imprisonment," they said.
Human Rights Watch called for Tuc's release ahead of his appeal trial.
Vietnam Arrests Another Member of Online Democracy Group, Radio Free Asia, September 1, 2018
Vietnam Activist Sentenced to 13 Years on Subversion Charges, US News, April 10, 2018
Vietnamese Political Prisoner Nguyen Van Tuc in Declining Health in Jail, Radio Free Asia, June 21, 2018
Vietnamese Court Upholds Democracy Advocate's 13-Year Sentence, Radio Free Asia, September 14, 2018
Profile last updated: 2019-04-08 03:19:30