This is not the first time Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has released reports that are based on wrongful, groundless and malicious information.
Vietnam has said that RSF’s 2019 World Press Freedom Index in which Vietnam ranked the 176th out of 180 countries is untrustworthy, unpersuasive and malicious.
This is not the first time RSF has released reports that are based on wrongful, groundless and malicious information. This year’s ranking is based on RSF’s own criteria without understanding the circumstances and conditions in each country, Deputy Spokesperson of Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ngo Toan Thang said at a press conference on April 23.
In Vietnam, rights to freedom of speech are stipulated in the 2013 Constitution and relevant laws. Therefore, people are able to access media channels to exercise their rights and express their opinions, he said.
Vietnam is currently home to nearly 1,000 printed and digital news agencies, more than 90 radio stations, nearly 200 TV channels, more than 25,000 licensed journalists working for the local media, the official added.
RSF claimed that as Vietnam’s citizens become increasingly engaged online, the authorities have been refining their digital repressive methods.
Under the newly-approved Law on Cyber Security that took effect in 2019, foreign online platforms are required to store their Vietnamese user data on servers in Vietnam and surrender it to the authorities when required, RSF said on its website.
In the 2018 ranking, Vietnam was put in the 175th place out of 180 countries.
Reporting by Linh Pham @ The Hanoi Times