Police deny accusations of violently suppressing demonstrator

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Police in Hanoi Tuesday denied accusations that a man was repressed brutally when he was joining others in a demonstration protesting China's acts in the East Sea last month.


Nguyen Duc Nhanh, director of Hanoi police division, said they launched investigations into the incident revealed in an online clip as proposed by several people who sent letters to police on July 20 and 27.


Police investigations showed that on July 17, Nguyen Chi Duc, 35, joined others in an unprompted demonstration at the intersection between Dien Bien Phu and Tran Phu streets in Tu Liem District.


When police asked the demonstrators to dissolve to prevent public disorders, Duc sat down to protest, forcing four officers to carry him to a bus which would take him to the police station where he would give explanations for his acts.


When they reached the bus door, Captain Pham Hai Minh from Hoan Kiem District was getting off, raising his leg to step down, but he didn't hit Duc, Dao Thanh Hai, chief of Hanoi police's inspectorate, said at the press briefing.


In his report to police, Duc also said that he wasn't beaten except some pushing when he was on the bus, according to Hai.


Investigators asked Duc to go the Hospital E, where doctors concluded that Duc suffered no injury or trauma, Hai said.


There was no basis to conclude that Duc was beaten, according to investigators.


However, Nhanh has temporarily suspended Minh as a censure, while the other four officers were asked to review their acts.


"I don't agree with the officers carrying him to the bus, because he is a patriotic demonstrator, not a criminal, so we need to draw experience from that and correct it," the director said.


Asked about the online clip, he said it was uploaded from overseas, so they couldn't identify who filmed and uploaded it.


"We couldn't clarify if the clip had been edited or not," Nhanh said.


According to Nhanh, so far eight unprompted demonstrations protesting China's acts in the East Sea have taken place across the capital with the participation of students, intellectuals, artists and business people among others.


They are patriotic demonstrations, so Hanoi's police and other agencies don't have policies of repressing and arresting demonstrators, he stressed.


However, because police have to protect embassies and public security, they have to convince demonstrators of keeping distance from the Chinese embassy and on occasion invite demonstrators to police station so they give explanations about their acts, Nhanh added.


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