Ministry asks social media platforms to pull videos of teenager death in Hà Nội

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Văn Phú Victoria condo building in Hà Nội, where the death took place. — Photo vtv.vn

HÀ NỘI — The Ministry of Information and Communications said it requested domestic and cross-border social media platforms to scan for and remove all video clips and images related to the death of a student in Hà Nội.

Local press previously has reported on the death of a 10th-grader from Hà Nội-Amsterdam School for the Gifted, who fell from his apartment on the 28th floor of a condo in Hà Đông District early Friday morning, at around 3:30am.

By late night, a seven-minute video reportedly of the incident (which appears to have been extracted from a security camera inside the apartment) showing the boy at the desk on his notebooks before stepping off from the balcony, along with a photograph of the ‘suicide notes’ he left for his family explaining the reasoning for ending his life, were shared all over Facebook, YouTube, and some news outlets as well.

Other than the outpouring of sympathies, there was also a lot of posts and comments excoriating the victim’s family and blaming them for the death of the student.

Deputy head of Department of Broadcasting and Electronic Information under the ministry Lê Quang Tự Do said that to date, most social media platforms have complied with the authorities’ takedown request.

“The sharing and spreading of this heart-breaking incident is a violation of the grieving family’s privacy, a violation of the children protection laws, and a lack of humanitarianism,” Do stressed.

The ministry has also asked the press to not dwell too deep into the incident, causing further pain to the family.

The information ministry representative said a website for children protection and emergency responses has been set up at vn-cop.vn recently.

The police is also searching for the ‘leaker’ of the video and the notes without the family or the authorities’ permissions, but have had no success so far.

Hà Đông’s authorities said they have finished the autopsy procedures and handed over the victim’s body to the family for funeral.

Just one day earlier, in the northern city of Bắc Ninh, a female eighth-grader was found dead by self-hanging in her own room, with reasons suspected to be depression as indicated from her letters and the diary. — VNS

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