Thich Quang Do, *1928, Vietnam
Profession: Buddhist monk, writer, scholar. Secretary General of the outlawed Institute for the Propagation of the Dharma, United Buddhist Church of Vietnam (UBCV).
Date of arrest: 9 October 2003
Details of arrest: Part of a delegation of nine UBCV leaders who were all arrested on 9 October 2003. The delegation had left Binh Dinh at 5.00 a.m. on 8 October 2003 en route for Ho Chi Minh City when security services blocked their departure. After a protest in which over two hundred monks formed a human shield around their vehicle, the delegation was allowed to continue its journey, only to meet another police barricade on the following day, when all nine UBCV leaders were arrested and taken away for interrogation. Thich Quang Do was placed under house arrest.
Place of detention: Thanh Minh Zen Monastery in Ho Chi Minh City.
Previous political imprisonment/problems: On 27 June 2003 he was released from a twenty-seven month detention order. Has spent most of the last twenty years in detention or under residential surveillance because of his campaign for religious freedom and free expression.
Other information: The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention declared his imprisonment as ‘arbitrary’ in May 2005.
Awards: Laureate of 2002 Czech Human Rights Homo Homini Award and 2006 Norwegian Rafto Human Rights Prize.
Source: PEN INTERNATIONAL Writers in Prison Committee Case List – January to June 2012
Photo: International Buddhist Information Bureau