June 6, 2019 / 4:45 PM / 12 days ago

EU calls for release of Vietnamese Facebook user over 'anti-state' posts

Vietnamese Facebook user Nguyen Ngoc Anh stands between policemen during his trial at a court in Ben Tre province, Vietnam June 6, 2019. Huynh Phuc Hau/VNA via REUTERS.

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union called for the immediately release of a Vietnamese Facebook user sentenced to six years in prison on Thursday for posts he made on the social media platform, saying the case marked a “worrying development.”

“The European Union expects the Vietnamese authorities to immediately release Mr Nguyen Ngoc Anh as well as all bloggers and human right defenders imprisoned for having peacefully expressed their views,” the bloc’s foreign service said in a statement.

“Nguyen Ngoc Anh’s right to peaceful freedom of expression is guaranteed by the Vietnamese Constitution.”

The Southeast Asian country’s government has labeled Anh’s posts “anti-state”.

Reporting by Alissa de Carbonnel

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