Third ‘Human Rights Coffee’ disrupted, 3 bloggers arrested

(VNRN) – A third “Human Rights Coffee” roundtable, focusing on police torture, is to take place today in coastal Nha Trang but less than an hour before starting time, three of the organizers were reportedly picked up by police and taken into custody.

According to other bloggers who are coming to the event, arrested were Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quynh (Nguyễn Ngọc Nhu Quỳnh), who blogs as “Me Nam” (Mother Mushroom) or “Me Nam Gau“; Nguyen Ho Nhat Thanh (Nguyễn Hồ Nhật Thành), known as Paulo Thanh Nguyen on Facebook; and his wife Trinh Kim Tien (Trịnh Kim Tiến), whose own father was tortured to death in Hanoi.

This third Human Rights Coffee roundtable is entitled “The Convention Against Torture and the Issue of Citizens Dying at Police Stations.” Set to begin at 9:30am, the three bloggers were arrested by 8:50.

They were then reportedly brought to the station at Loc Tho ward in the resort city of Nha Trang on the country’s central coast, according to Facebook alerts by other bloggers. One friend called the station and the person answering the phone said he was not allowed to answer questions about the new arrestees.

This third Human Rights Coffee followed two others taking in Ho Chi Minh City on Mar 1 and in Hanoi on Mar 20, both on the right to freedom of movement. Diplomats from Australia, Germany, Sweden and the European Union were present and spoke at the Hanoi roundtable.

Other bloggers arriving at the meeting point now are being told by management that the coffee shop is fully booked even though all tables are empty.

(Photo above: This picture of bloggers Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quynh akak Me Nam Gau (left) and Trinh Kim Tien, wearing T-shirts printed with “Stop police killing civilians” was posted on Nhu Quynh’s Facebook page moments before the two were reportedly arrested together with Tien’s husband Nguyen Ho Nhat Thanh.)

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