A journalist from Vietnam News Agency (VNA) was attacked by a man armed with a rock hammer while reporting on a story in the northern province of Tuyên Quang.— VNA/VNS Photo
HÀ NỘI — A journalist from Vietnam News Agency (VNA) was attacked by a man armed with a rock hammer while reporting on a story in the northern province of Tuyên Quang.
Senior management at VNA have condemned the attack and asked the local authority to take action to protect journalists carrying out their duties.
VNA’s Deputy General Director and Chairman of the VNA’s Journalists Federation Lê Quốc Minh, said their resident correspondent in Tuyên Quang, Nguyễn Văn Tý and a colleague from another newspaper came to Tân Tiến Village to report on the illegal exploitation of lead and zinc ore in a local resident’s garden.
As they were shooting video and taking photographs, homeowner Bàn Văn Trường appeared and asked them to delete the images.
When the journalists refused, Trường allegedly chased the reporter and hit him with a rock hammer. When Tý and his colleague tried to leave, Trường and his nephew are alleged to have continued to chase and throw stones at the two reporters. They escaped the scene thanks to the help from local residents.
After the incident, Tý reported the case to both VNA and the local authority. Sơn Dương District police sent a team to the area and confiscated 140 packs of illegally-exploited ore and fuses suspected to be used for mine explosion. The police also implemented measures to protect the two reporters.
VNA Deputy General Director Lê Quốc Minh stressed as Vietnam News Agency was an important information department of the Party and State, its reporters had a duty to bring accurate information to readers and audiences.
“It is unacceptable to interfere with the work, to take aggressive action and to use violence that can affect reporters’ lives,” he said.
“Such actions violate the law. Vietnam News Agency wants the authorities to quickly investigate the case and punish anyone who committed a crime."
According to local reports, illegal ore mining has been going on for a long time, with explosives used causing cracks in people’s houses and endangering lives.
Sơn Dương District Police is investigating the case.
Kon Tum reporter attacked
In another case, a Vietnam Television reporter in the Tây Nguyên (Central Highland) province of Kon Tum was injured after he was attacked by a group of men on Sunday morning, causing him injuries.
Hoàng Đình Chiểu, 59, was set upon by two men when he was having breakfast on Hồ Quý Ly Street.
According to Kon Tum General Hospital’s medical records, Chiểu was admitted to the hospital with injuries on the left eye, left chest, nasal bleeding and broken nose due to being beaten.
Before the assault, on Saturday night, Chiểu received a death threat call for "obstructing their business." Two men also came to Chiểu’s house, aggressively asking for talks.
The case is under investigation. — VNS