Vietnam says release of U.S. citizen was for humanitarian reasons

HANOI (Reuters) – The release last week of Michael Nguyen, a U.S. citizen who was sentenced to 12 years in a Vietnamese prison for attempting to overthrow the state, was for humanitarian reasons, Vietnam’s foreign ministry said on Thursday.

“In the spirit of humanitarianism, on October 21 the authorities of Vietnam suspended the sentence of Michael Phuong Minh Nguyen and deported him from Vietnam,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang told Reuters in a statement.

Nguyen was sentenced to 12 years in prison for “activities aimed at overthrowing the people’s administration,” the statement said. His family had earlier confirmed his release.

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