Legal Initiatives for VIETNAM co-director Trinh Huu Long confirms the Martin Ennals Awards given to his close colleague Pham Doan Trang, is a strong and clear message to the oppressive Vietnamese government that what she is doing is right, and the international community supports her cause.


A jailed Vietnamese journalist has been recognized with a top human rights award.

On Jan. 19, the Martin Ennals Foundation named Pham Doan Trang, Abdul-Hadi Al-Khawaja of Bahrain and Dr. Daouda Diallo of Burkina Faso as winners of the 2022 Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders.

The Geneva-based foundation said the three laureates worked as driving forces of the human rights movement and inspired many more to commit themselves to protect human rights.

It said Trang, who was sentenced to nine years in jail last month for conducting anti-state propaganda, is a leading journalist, editor and democracy advocate in Vietnam, where the Communist Party has left little room for opposition voices to flourish.

The 43-year-old activist founded several independent media outlets to raise awareness among citizens of their fundamental rights, galvanizing many other journalists and human rights defenders to speak up.

Trinh Huu Long, one of her closest colleagues, said: “The Martin Ennals Award is a strong and clear message to the Vietnamese authoritarian government, and, more importantly, to the Vietnamese people, that what she’s been doing is right and the international community is standing by her.”