Click her for Lao version/ຄລິກບ່ອນນີ້ເພື່ອອ່ານພາສາລາວ
Lao authorities said they have completed the return of all
Hmongs repatriated from Thailand last month, who had been staying at a temporary camp in Paksane province, back to
their home villages or to new resettlement sites. And a group of visiting US
lawmakers confirmed that the Hmongs have been well taken care of.
The Lao Ministry of
Foreign Affairs released a statement confirming that the 4,711 Hmongs who were repatriated from Huay Namkhao temporary camp in Khaokhor district of
Phetchaboun province, in northeastern Thailand, between December 28-29, 2009, have all been returned to their home villages or sent to new resettlement sites. The majority of
them chose to settle down in Bolikhamsay province and the new resettlement area in Kasi district, Vientiane province, while the rest went back to their
home villages in Bokeo, Xiengkouang, Luangprabang, Xayabouly and Oudomsay provinces.
As for the 158 Hmongs who were held
in a Nongkhai immigration jail and considered "People of Concern" by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesperson Khenthong Nouanthasing said they had changed their minds and chose to return to Laos instead of waiting for resettlement in a third country, as they felt that they would be well taken care of and well provided for by the Lao government.
Meanwhile, a group of US lawmakers led by Congressman Eni Faleomavaega who paid a visit to the Hmong returnees at Phalak resettlement village in Vientiane province said that they
found no evidence of mistreatment, harassment, or use of violence against the Hmongs in whichever way.
also stressed that the good treatment of the returnees by the Lao government boded well for the strengthening of co-operation between the Lao
and U.S. governments in various fields, ranging from UXO clearance to trade strengthening and cooperation on reducing global
For their part, Lao officials have always maintained that
they will provide assistance and take good care of the Hmongs, as asserted by the Deputy Chief of Staff Brigadier General Bouasieng
Champaphanh, who spoke in his capacity as chairman of the Lao side of the Sub-committee on
Lao-Thai Border Security:
“The assistance promised by
the government of Laos to those who voluntarily return to resettle in the new
development village includes providing them with 1) shelters and arable land
for growing their food, 2) rice sufficiently for a year, 3)free electricity service for a year, 4) an initial pocket money of 300, 000 kip. And the
government will also continue to build and improve roads and provide comprehensive
basic services, such as providing education to Hmong children, primary public
health care, clean water, and irrigation canals.