ASIAN PACIFIC LEAGUE FOR FREEDOM AND DEMOCRACY
44th Conference, December 17-20, 1998, Manila, Philippines (*)
" Economic Stability and Global Peace "
Whereas the communists took over Laos in December 1975 in violation of the 1962 Declaration on the Neutrality of Laos and its Protocol, as well as the 1973 Vientiane Agreement on Laos, Thus abolishing constitutional monarchy, along with the Provisional Government of National Unity;
Whereas the Pathet Lao Party established their totalitarian regime, arrested and deported 15,000 public servants of the old regime and Their Majesties the King and the Queen as well as the Crown Prince to concentration camps where they have been physically eliminated, thus causing since 1974 the exodus of more than 500,00 Lao - accounting for 15% of Lao population;
Whereas the 25-years Lao-Vietnam treaty, signed on 18 July 1977 is renewable every 10 years and appears to have placed Laos under the Vietnamese protectorate making Laos's independence non-existent;
Whereas today thousands of political prisoners are detained under inhumane conditions in different prisons throughout Laos in violation of human rights and a communist dissident, former vice-minister, arrested in 1990 for having advocated a multi-party system, passed away in prison on February 1998;
Whereas under the totalitarian regime the economic situation in Laos has gone from bad to worse since 1975 in spite of massive aid given to by free countries - thus making Lao people one of the poorest peoples in the world - and recently foreigners brought a law suit against Lao Government corrupt members for cheating them in their business development in Laos;
Whereas Lao people abroad have set up the "Assembly of Lao Representatives Abroad" to intensify their struggle for peace, freedom, democracy, human rights and for the return to Laos with security an dignity, under the leadership of the Lao Royal Family in exile;
Whereas Laos become a member of the Association of Southeast Asia Nations, which calls for the creation of open societies in each of its member states by the year 2020;
Now, therefore, be it resolved,
That it is the sense of the Asian Pacific League for Freedom and Democracy that the present government of Laos should :
(1) respect international norms of human rights and democratic freedom for the Lao people;
(2) release immediately and unconditionally all political prisoners;
(3) terminate the 25-years Lao-Vietnam treaty, signed on 18 July 1977;
(4) realise the withdrawal of all occupation forces and administrations from Lao territories under international control;
(5) stop deforestation and destruction of environment;
(6) establish permanent talks with the representatives of Lao people abroad, such as the Lao Royal Family, via governments of countries favourable to peace and development of Laos, in order to institute a process of democracy, human rights, and openly-contested free and fair elections in Laos.
(*)Attending the Conference were the representatives of Australia, China (Taiwan), Guam, India, Indonesia, Japan, Jordan, Korea, Laos, Palau, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Turkey, Vietnam.