The Straits Times
Published on Sep 25, 2012

US 'deeply troubled' by fate of Vietnamese bloggers


WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States (US) voiced concern on Monday at the jailing of three Vietnamese bloggers for "anti-state propaganda" and urged that they be freed.

"We are deeply troubled by the convictions of three Vietnamese bloggers who appear to have done nothing more than exercise their right to freedom of expression," said State department spokesman Victoria Nuland.

A court in southern Vietnam jailed the three on Monday, including one whose case had been raised by US President Barack Obama.

After a trial lasting just a few hours, high-profile blogger Nguyen Van Hai, alias Dieu Cay, was sentenced to 12 years in prison, while Ta Phong Tan, a policeman-turned-dissident whose mother self-immolated to protest her detention, was given 10 years and led from court screaming.