Press Release on Forced Repatriation and Genocide of Hmong Returnees in Laos by the Lao Human Rights Council - July 24, 1994
                               ******************
                                A SIMPLE REQUEST
                               ******************
                                                                        
       Many of our files are unique and/or copyrighted by The Center For 
       World  Indigenous  Studies  and The  Fourth  World  Documentation 
       Project.   All  FWDP  files  may  be  reproduced  for  electronic  
       transfer  or posting on computer  networks  and  bulletin  boards 
       provided that:
       
          1. All text remains unaltered.
          2. No profit is made from such transfer.
          3. Full credit is given to the author(s) and the Fourth World 
             Documentation Project.
          4. This banner is included in the document if being used as a 
             file on a BBS, FTP site or other file archive.

       Thank you for your cooperation.

       John Burrows
       Executive Director
       Center For World Indigenous Studies

   ()-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=()
   ||///////////////////////////////////||
   ||=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-||
   ||                                                                      ||
   ||    The Fourth World Documentation Project runs entirely on grants    ||
   ||    and private donations.  If  you find this  information service    ||
   ||    useful to you in any way, please consider making a donation to    ||
   ||    help keep it running.  CWIS is a  non-profit  [U.S. 501(c)(3)]    ||
   ||    organization.   All donations are completely tax deductible.      ||
   ||    Donations may be made to:                                         ||
   ||                                                                      ||
   ||    The Center For World Indigenous Studies                           ||
   ||    ATTN: FWDP                                                        ||
   ||    P.O. Box 2574                                                     ||
   ||    Olympia, Washington  USA                                          ||
   ||    98507-2574                                                        ||
   ||                                    Thank You,                        ||
   ||                                    CWIS Staff                        ||
   ||                                                                      ||
   ||=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-||
   ||///////////////////////////////////||
   ()=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-()

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
::  This file has been created under the loving care of  ::
::     -= THE FOURTH WORLD DOCUMENTATION PROJECT =-      ::
::                 A service provided by                 ::
::        The Center For World Indigenous Studies        ::
::                                                       ::
::    THE FOURTH WORLD DOCUMENTATION PROJECT ARCHIVES    ::
::         http://www.halcyon.com/FWDP/fwdp.html         ::
::        THE CENTER FOR WORLD INDIGENOUS STUDIES        ::
::       http://www.halcyon.com/FWDP/cwisinfo.html       ::
:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

DOCUMENT: LAOS.TXT

                       LAO HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL
                            P.O. Box 100960
                        Denver, Colorado 80250
                            (303) 777-4138
                          Fax (303) 733-7254

                             July 25, 1994

     IMMEDIATE PRESS RELEASE ON FORCED REPATRIATION AND GENOCIDE 
                      OF HMONG RETURNEES IN LAOS  
     
     
     1.  There are about 50,000 Hmong refugees in the camps in 
         Thailand who will be forced by government officials to 
         return to Laos by the end of 1995.  
     
     2.  The UNHCR and Thai government announced they would close 
         down all the refugee camps in Thailand in 1995. The 
         Napho Camp, Thailand, will be closed by the end of 1994.  
     
     3.  The policies of voluntary repatriation and screening-out 
         of the Comprehensive Plan of Action (CPA) and the 
         Tripartite Agreements on Hmong Refugees have continued 
         to be altered into forced repatriation.  
     
     4.  Those refugees who refuse to return to unsafe havens in 
         Laos are arrested and imprisoned in the camps in 
         Thailand.  
     
     5.  Since September 8, 1992, government officials have 
         continued to use food as a political weapon to punish 
         Hmong refugees in the Napho Camp and to force them to 
         register for return to Laos. Those refugees who refuse 
         to comply with the inhumane acts do not receive food and 
         basic needs.  
     
     6.  About 35,000 refugees escaped from the camps in Thailand 
         to displaced areas because of the use of food as a 
         political tool to punish the refugees and force them to 
         return to Laos through forced repatriation.  
     
     7.  Eyewitnesses and victims in Laos confirmed that the 
         communist Pathet Lao government killed and massacred 
         approximately 800 - 2,000 Hmong returnees between 1989 
         and 1991.  
     
     8.  Since January 1990, the communist Pathet Lao government 
         has forced more than 60,000 Hmong people to move out of 
         their homes, territories and farming areas to many 
         desert areas in order to kill them step-by-step in the 
         lowland areas.  
     
     9.  Approximately 10,000 - 15,000 Hmong people inside Laos 
         have been arrested, imprisoned and killed since January 
         1990.  
     
     10. There is no freedom of residence and freedom of movement 
         for the Hmong people inside Laos, or for Hmong returnees 
         from Thailand to Laos. The communist government and the 
         UNHCR put the Hmong returnees in Phou Keng and Vien Kham 
         camps in the Plain of Jars, Xieng Khouang Province, and 
         camps near Vientiane Province. The returnees have no 
         right to choose freedom of residence.  
     
     11. The refugees in the camps in Thailand confirmed that the 
         officials of the "Thai government, UNHCR, U.S. 
         Department of State and communist Pathet Lao government 
         are the actors and conspirators of the forced 
         repatriation of Hmong refugees from Thailand to Laos."  
     
     12. Since 1975, the communist Pathet Lao and the North 
         Vietnamese troops have killed more than 300,000 people 
         in Laos. The Hmong are the largest number of victims.  
        
     13. On May 7, 1993, the former Prime Minister of the Royal 
         Thai Government, MR. KHRUKRIT PRAMOJ, published an 
         article in the BANGKOK SIAM RAT in the Thai language and 
         in FBIS-EAS of May 25, 1993, which was signed by 
         Souphesai Souphanouvong, a son of the President, Prince 
         Souphanouvong, leader of the communist Pathet Lao 
         government. The article accurately reported that the 
         communist Pathet Lao government has "secret plans" for 
         the liquidation and extermination of the Hmong people, 
         including the Hmong returnees in Laos.  
     
     14. The FBIS-EAS of June 28, 1994, reported that the Thai 
         "National Security Council (NSC) announced earlier this 
         year (1994) that it would dose Ban Napho at the end of 
         this year. Of those remaining (12,000 Hmong refugees), 
         only about 2,000 have expressed willingness to 
         repatriate. The rest, mostly Hmong hill tribe people, 
         have reportedly refused to return, wanting instead to 
         resettle in a third country." 
     
     15. The BANGKOK POST of June 29, 1994, reported that the 
         Thai National Security Council will use "FORCED 
         REPATRIATION" to repatriate the Hmong refugees in 
         Thailand to return to Laos as government authorities and 
         officials have forced the Vietnamese boat people to 
         return from Hong Kong to Vietnam.  
     
     16. The BANGKOK POST of June 30, 1994, accurately reported 
         that in "Ban Napho, Nakhon Phanom (Thailand) -- About 
         300 Hmong made a tearful departure yesterday (June 29, 
         1994) at the start of a journey back to Laos supported 
         by the United Nations High Commissioner for refugees 
         (UNHCR)." This means that the Thai government and the 
         UNHCR are cooperating to force the Hmong refugees to 
         return from Thailand to Laos, because the refugees were 
         making a "tearful departure."  
     
     17. Refugee Reports of the U.S. Committee for Refugees in 
         Washington, D.C., of October 29, 1994, confirmed that 
         Mr. Vue Mai, a former Chairman of the Ban Vinai Camp, 
         Thailand, and a returnee, "disappeared" on September 11, 
         1994. The U.S. Committee for Refugees continued to say 
         that "Informed sources report that the Laotian security 
         forces, which had been tracking Vue Mai's movements for 
         several months, arrested him." Four days after vue Mai 
         disappeared, on September 15, 1993, Mr. Chong Moua Thao, 
         a former Vice Chairman of the Chiang Kham Camp, 
         Thailand, died of food poisoning after he ate a meal 
         with officials of the communist Pathet Lao government.  
     
     18. On May 22, 1994, at 2:00 p.m., the communist Pathet Lao 
         government arrested, tortured, and imprisoned Mr. Xia 
         Fong Xiong and Yang Chao Xiong, Hmong returnees in Laos 
         in Phongsavang, Xieng Khouang Province, Laos. From 1989 
         till now, in 1994, there have been more than 2,000 cases 
         like the cases of Vue Mai, Chong Moua Thao, Xia Fong 
         Xiong and Yang Chao Xiong in Laos.  
     
     19. The PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER of February 27, 1994, 
         accurately reported that Mr. Vang Thai Xiong and 400 
         non-volunteer refugees in the Napho Camp, Thailand, were 
         forced to return to Laos on April 27, 1993. Indeed, from 
         1991 to 1994, more than 4,500 cases like the case of 
         Vang Thai Xiong of April 27, 1993, have occurred.  
     
     20. ON APRIL 26, 1994, an official of the UNHCR in 
         Washington, D.C., admitted that Mr. Cha Seng Vang (CSE 
         557) and Chong Neng Vang (CSC 593) were forced to return 
         from the Nong Saeng Camp, Thailand to Laos on April 9, 
         1992. This was because the UNHCR concluded the 
         "investigations" that "They (Cha Seng Vang and Chong 
         Neng Vang) wanted to go to USA. Not understand screened 
         out. Thai MOI used physical force to threaten them to 
         return" to Laos. However, the UNHCR has ignored the 
         forced repatriation of Hmong refugees from Thailand to 
         Laos.  
     
     21. Many refugees in Thailand and victims of forced 
         repatriation complained and reported that some officials 
         of the UNHCR have repatriated the Lao/Hmong refugees 
         from Thailand to Laos according to POLITICAL AND 
         ECONOMIC OBJECTIVES of the Thai government, communist 
         government in Laos and the U.S. government. If this is 
         the case, the UNHCR has departed from its Statute and 
         principles.  
     
     22. The Lao Human Rights Council and Hmong returnees in Laos 
         and refugees in Thailand oppose forced repatriation. We 
         appeal and call upon the United Nations and 
         international human rights organizations and parties 
         concerned to condemn the forced repatriation and 
         persecution and murder of returnees in Laos.  
     
     23. Forced repatriation and murders of Hmong refugees and 
         returnees are international crimes against peace and 
         crimes against humanity.  
     
     24. The United Nations and international community must 
         bring peace, stability and human rights to Laos as was 
         done in Cambodia before forcing all Hmong refugees from 
         Thailand to return to Laos.  
     
     Thank you for your interest and concern over the forgotten 
     tragedies of Hmong people in Laos and refugees in the camps 
     in Thailand. 
     
     Press Release by 
     Dr. Vang Pobzeb  
     President of the Lao Human Rights Council in the United States 
     Head of the Delegation to the Conference of the U.N. Working 
     Group on Indigenous Populations in 
     Geneva, Switzerland,  
     on July 25-29, 1994. 


   -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
   To have a current Center For World Indigenous Studies Publication
          Catalogue sent to you via e-mail, send a request to

                          jburrows@halcyon.com

                                  

                http://www.halcyon.com/FWDP/cwiscat.html
   
                  Center For World Indigenous Studies
                             P.O. Box 2574
                          Olympia, WA  U.S.A.
                               98507-2574

                           FAX: 360-956-1087
       OCR Provided by Caere Corporation's OmniPage Professional