Vietnam Stops Anti-China Protest, Detains Many
Vietnamese authorities detained dozens of people participating in ongoing anti-China protests stemming from a territorial dispute in the South China Sea. From Reuters:
One witness said plainclothes police forced around 40 demonstrators onto two public buses and drove them away within minutes of the start of the demonstration. A blogger who has chronicled the demonstrations and has contacts among the regular protesters said at least one bus left with 19 people aboard.
It was the 11th anti-China rally in an unprecedented series of public protests that have taken place nearly every Sunday since early June against what Vietnamese see as China’s violations of their country’s sovereignty in the South China Sea.
“We’re very concerned that protesters were arrested by the police and call for their immediate release,” said Phil Robertson, deputy head for Asia of Human Rights Watch.
“Sadly, the over-reaction of the authorities was shown by the fact that the police outnumbered the protesters, and their aggressive actions to prevent the assembly from going forward. These protesters have done nothing wrong, the police should release them unconditionally.”