Journalists urge investigation after attack in the field


Update: June, 15/2017 – 08:10

HÀ NỘI — The Việt Nam Journalists Association yesterday urged the Hà Nội Police to undertake an urgent investigation of an attack on Việt Nam Television journalists that occurred while they were working on an undercover live report in Sóc Sơn District.

Hồ Quang Lợi, Standing Vice President of VNJA, said the organisation received a report that a group of VTV journalists were assaulted. Their work accessories, including a high-tech camera, were destroyed.

The association’s inspection board immediately contacted the VTV to capture specific and accurate information, he added.

Lợi also cited the Press Law of 2016, which was effective from 1 January 2017, regulating the functions, duties and rights of journalists. The law affirms that no one but the state should prevent, threaten, assault or destroy the working tools of journalists while they work in accordance with the law.

These are the rules to protect journalists. Violating these rule means violating the law, and violators should be strictly punished, the official said.

Lợi said the association has sent an official dispatch to the leaders of Hà Nội authority  and Police to undertake an urgent investigation of the assault, which has threatened the journalists’ lives and destroyed their means of practice.

The organisation also asked the authorities to punish the attackers and to bring them to court.

On Tuesday, after receiving a complaint from locals that home and shop builders were illegally encroaching public land and ponds in Sóc Sơn District, a group of reporters of the VTV arrived at the scene to confirm the information.

There, the group visited and interviewed some officials from Phù Lỗ Commune People’s Committee, Sóc Sơn District.

They also met with the chairman of the communal people’s committee, who confirmed that there was a case of encroachment.

The reporters requested to be continue their report by taking photos and video.

The chairman then called a man named H., the owner of a villa built on a 3 hectare of the encroached lake.

After phone call, the chairman refused to take the reporters to the scene, saying it was because of a “sensitive reason”.

As per the rules of their trade, the reporters ventured to the scene to verify the information.

However, the man named H. did not co-operate with them. Instead, he drove his Mitsubishi car to directly into the reporters, trying to hit them. The reporters avoided the attack, but their camera was destroyed by the crash.

Later, they tried to contact the Sóc Sơn Police to inform them of the alleged assault. VNS


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