A Vietnamese blogger was going to be featured in our Write for Rights cases in 2018. Instead, she was released in October and is now living safely in the USA. Authorities arrested Nguyễn Ngọc Như Quỳnh (also known by her blogging pseudonym, Mẹ Nấm, which translates as Mother Mushroom) on October 10, 2016 for speaking her mind online.
She was cut off from the outside world until June 20, 2017. Nine days later, she was handed a 10-year prison sentence, having been convicted of “conducting propaganda against the state” under Article 88 of the Penal Code. Mother Mushroom co-founded the independent Vietnamese Bloggers Network in December 2013. She advocated for human rights and justice for more than 10 years before her arrest, enduring harassment and interrogation for her peaceful activities.
We wish her well as she establishes a new life in exile but one in which she is free to speak her mind.