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Rights Group Seeks Probe of Vietnamese Journalist's Death

A leading press freedom group is calling for Vietnam to thoroughly investigate the death of a newspaper reporter who was doused with chemicals and set on fire as he slept.

A Bangkok-based spokesman for the Committee to Protect Journalists said Monday that media killings are rare in Vietnam and that authorities should act "to ensure that a culture of impunity does not begin to take root."

Reporter Le Hoang Hung died Saturday, 10 days after an intruder broke into his home and set the fire that caused severe burns to 20 percent of his body.

Reports in Vietnam's tightly controlled media said it was likely that Hung was attacked because of his work for Nguoi Lao Dong newspaper in the southern Mekong Delta province of Long An. Hung had been working on articles about border smuggling and official wrongdoing at the provincial market control department.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.