Vietnam deports American pro-democracy activist

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Vietnam has deported an American man of Vietnamese origin who was sentenced to six months in jail on terrorism charges for planning to circulate anti-government pamphlets, state media said Sunday.

Nguyen Quoc Quan, a mathematician from Sacramento, Calif., was expelled from Ho Chi Minh City on Saturday, the Vietnam News Agency reported.

Quan was among several people arrested last November in a house in the city. Authorities said they were preparing to circulate anti-government pamphlets on behalf of Viet Tan, a California-based group that Vietnam considers a terrorist organization.

Viet Tan says it promotes nonviolent political change in Communist Vietnam. U.S. Ambassador Michael Michalak has said he has seen no evidence the group is engaged in terrorism.

Also arrested in November were American citizen Truong Van Ba from Hawaii and French journalist Nguyen Thi Thanh Van. Ba, whose American name is Leon Truong, and Van were released in December.

Vietnamese authorities have said Quan entered the country on a forged Cambodian passport. He was sentenced Tuesday, then deported after being given credit for time served while awaiting trial.

Vietnam does not tolerate dissent, which it considers a threat to its one-party rule.

The Associated Press: Vietnam deports American pro-democracy activist


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