Vietnam jails four activists on anti-state charges

HANOI (AFP) – Four activists have been jailed for up to 10 years after Vietnamese courts found them guilty of spreading “anti-state propaganda”.

Vietnam’s communist government is swearing in a new cabinet, with top leaders taking office in the next few days.

It is also preparing for legislative elections in May for the rubber-stamp national assembly that has around 500 members.

Pressure on human rights activists has coincided with these political events, observers said. In the southern Central Highlands province of Lam Dong on Tuesday, activist Vu Tien Chi, 55, was jailed for 10 years for sharing and posting online articles allegedly defaming the Communist Party and Vietnamese leaders.

Since 2018, Chi has shared 338 articles and posted 181 videos on his personal accounts on Facebook and YouTube, questioning the policies of the state and government.