FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 31, 2009
KAGEN CALLS FOR ACTION ON FORCED REPATRIATION OF 4,300 HMONG TO LAOS
(APPLETON, WI) – Congressman Steve Kagen, M.D. released the following statement regarding the forceful relocation of 4,300 Hmong from Thailand to Laos.
"The Hmong people have a proud 4,000-year old cultural history, and a generation ago they served with honor, courage, and incredible skill alongside our soldiers in Laos and Vietnam.
In the last several days, the government of Thailand relocated 4,300 Laotian Hmong people back into Laos. These actions by the Thai government have been rightly condemned by international human rights organizations, the United Nations, and the United States Congress.
I spoke with the U.S. State Department to request that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton ask the Laotian government to release the identity of all the Hmong people relocated; to arrange for on the ground monitors of their safety; and to allow the emigration of any and all Hmong refugees as soon as possible.
Wisconsin communities understand the many sacrifices made by the Hmong people for our nation, and we will continue to protect their families’ best interests here and abroad."