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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Vietnam Re-Arrests Ailing Dissident Priest Van Ly

 From BBC News
 
One of Vietnam's best-known dissidents, Catholic priest Nguyen Van Ly, has been re-arrested more than a year after getting medical leave from prison. 
 
Fr Nguyen Van Ly
Sources told journalists he had been escorted by police from a church in the Hue area of central Vietnam.

The government said he had been distributing anti-government writings.

His eight-year prison sentence for subversion had been suspended in March of last year to allow him to seek treatment for a brain tumour.

The condition of his health was not clear following news of his re-arrest on Monday.

Fr Ly, who is in his 60s, suffered two strokes in 2009 that left him partly paralysed, and Western governments had demanded repeatedly that he be freed.

His original trial made news headlines as he tried to read out a poem criticising Vietnam's communist authorities and was muzzled by police.

He has spent more than 15 years in prison since 1977.

In 2009 a group of 37 US senators wrote to Vietnam's President Nguyen Minh Triet, calling for the priest's release.

The Roman Catholic clergyman was a founding member of Bloc 8406, a pro-democracy movement launched in 2006.
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