Bars For Blogging is a human rights activism campaign to raise awareness for three prisoners of conscience in Vietnam. In January 2013, Nguyễn Đặng Minh Mẫn, 26, Đặng Xuân Diệu, 33, and Hồ Đức Hoà, 38, were each sentenced to over 8 years in prison as a part of one of the largest show trials in Vietnam. The three were part of a large crackdown against digital activists. They were all sentenced under Article 79, “attempting to overthrow the government.”
We are a group of international Vietnamese activists from the US, Canada, France, and Australia who launched the Bars For Blogging campaign to called attention to the cruelty the prisoners have suffered behind bars and the Communist regime’s repressive practices against peaceful activists.
Using the hashtag #barsforblogging, the social media efforts launched on Facebook on Human Rights Day, December 10, 2015 and is set to continue until December 17, 2015 with hopes to spread awareness until the prisoners are freed.
What does “Bars For Blogging” mean?
Although the Vietnamese government made international promises to protect human rights, it constantly violates such commitments. In particular, civil and political rights are greatly restricted. The simple act of blogging about democracy and human rights can quickly lead to imprisonment, hence “Bars For Blogging.”
This campaign raises awareness about the plight of Vietnamese activists imprisoned for speaking out against social injustice. We hope to increase international pressure so there will be NO MORE “Bars For Blogging” in Vietnam.