Nov. 2017: A Ha Tinh court added Nguyen Van Hoa’s name to the long list of persecuted bloggers at the end a trial lasting just two and a half hours, sentencing him to seven years in prison followed by three years of house arrest on a charge of “disseminating propaganda against the state” under article 88 of Vietnam’s penal code.

The two prongs of Vietnam’s response to the Formosa chemical spill were shown in stark relief on Monday: harsh repression of environmental campaigners – and, at the same time, an attempt to reassure the public that lessons have been learned.

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