Statement on the Eighth Commemoration of Vietnam Human Rights Day

Mr. Bo ha-Tint, Elected Member of Parliament in Exile
Chair and Minister of the Finance Committee
National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma
P.O. Box 14536, Ben Franklin Station, Washington, D.C.
Tel: 202-639-0639 Fax: 202-639-0638
May 10, 2002

Honorable Members of the United States Congress,

Distinguished Guests and My Vietnamese Friends,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am very delighted to be here with the Honorable Dr. Quan Q. Nguyen and Members of the International Committee for Freedom to Support The Non-Violent Movement For Human Rights in Vietnam, and you all at this auspicious moment, the commemoration of the eighth anniversary of the Vietnam Human Rights Day. On behalf of the National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma, my fellow Burmese elected Members of Parliament in exile, and the people of Burma, I would like to thank all of you for giving me this opportunity to express our solidarity and support to your struggle for protection and promotion of human rights and freedom in Vietnam.

For decades, the peoples of Vietnam and Burma have been denied of their rights to freedom of thought, conscience, expression and association under the repressive regimes. People who believe in democracy and protection of human rights are subject to torture, arrest, intimidation and inhuman treatment under those authoritarian rules. We have been witnessing inexpressible accounts of human rights abuses and lack of opportunities for citizen to participate in the national political process in our two countries. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and Dr. Nguyen Dan Que are among those, whose pains and sufferings are not to be forgotten. It is a misfortune for all of us that the Vietnam, Burma and some Asian countries still remain unchanged while others have been changed under the global wave of democratization. It is extremely important that we, Asians should not see political and cultural clashes between the Asian values and the basic rights and freedoms set forth in the universal declaration of human rights.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

You all may agree that our struggles for democracy, freedom and protection and promotion of human rights in our respective nations are our causes and we, we must work harder, be united and pragmatic to achieve our goals. It is, however, very important to have strong, consistent and broad support of international community, especially when there are authoritarian regimes, who do not want to change and use their power and brutality for that. Evidently, our leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was freed from house arrest a few days ago without any conditions as a result of her resoluteness for democracy, freedom and human rights with the support and joint efforts of the United Nations and the international community. We welcome this as a positive and one of the major steps to be taken and hope to see further progress for democratization in Burma. We thank you all for your support.

As we all continue our struggles, I have the same faith and wish all the best that the day will come soon, when all the people of Vietnam are freed, including Dr. Nguyen Dan Que, and enjoy fundamental human rights and political rights.

Thank you all.

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