Laos, Hmong Veterans Memorial Ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery

    WASHINGTON, May 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Lao Veterans of
 America, Inc. (LVA) and the Center for Public Policy Analysis (CPPA) will
 hold a memorial and wreath laying ceremony in Arlington National Cemetery
 to commemorate the 32nd Anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War in Laos
 and to honor Hmong and Laotian veterans who served during the conflict
 (from 11:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., on Tuesday, May 8, 2007, at the Lao
 Veterans Memorial Monument, Grant Ave., Sec. 2, Arlington National Cemetery
 ). Ethnic Hmong and Laotian veterans and their refugee families, who served
 in the U.S. Secret Army during the Vietnam War, will participate and
 attend.
     "We will gather at the Lao Veterans of America monument in Arlington
 Cemetery to honor the memory of our beloved nation of Laos and the many
 thousands of fallen Lao and Hmong veterans and their families, our
 families, who died fighting to defend their homeland from invasion and
 attack by Communist Pathet Lao forces," stated Colonel Wangyee Vang,
 National President and founder of the Lao Veterans of America, Inc. "It was
 ten years ago that we first gathered in Arlington Cemetery and in
 Washington, D.C., for the first-ever National Recognition Ceremonies that
 allowed us to dedicate this sacred monument to the Lao and Hmong veterans
 and their American advisors who served together in Southeast Asia during
 the Vietnam War to defend the national security interests and sovereignty
 of both the Kingdom of Laos and its ally the United States," Wangyee Vang
 concluded.
     The Lao Veterans of America, Inc. is the nation's largest Laotian and
 Hmong veterans organization and represents thousands of veterans and their
 refugee families in the United States.
     The memorial service will mark the 32nd anniversary of the end of the
 Vietnam War in Laos and honor the Laotian and Hmong veterans, and their
 American advisors, who served in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War.
 Participation will also include an official U.S. military joint armed
 forces color guard, wreath bearer and bugler.
     "Today, it is still important, for many reasons, to remember and
 memorialize the sacrifices and suffering of the Laotian and Hmong people
 during the Vietnam War in support of the Kingdom of Laos and U.S. national
 security interests," stated Philip Smith, Executive Director of the Center
 for Public Policy Analysis who also serves as the Washington, D.C. Director
 for the Lao Veterans of America. "After the war, tens of thousands of
 people died at the brutal and bloody hands of the Pathet Lao communist
 regime, a corrupt, one-party military regime that still rules Laos today
 and continues to persecute and kill its own freedom-loving people --
 especially peaceful dissidents, student leaders as well as ethnic and
 religious minority groups," Smith concluded.
     A recent 25-page report by Amnesty International released in March of
 2007 documents ongoing human rights violations by the Lao government
 against the Hmong and Laotian people.
     Speakers include: Colonel Wangyee Vang, President, Lao Veterans of
 America, Inc. (LVA); Dr. Jane Hamilton-Merritt, Hmong & Laotian Scholar;
 Philip Smith, Executive Director, Center for Public Policy Analysis (CPPA);
 Grant McClure, Counterparts Military Advisors Association; and others.
     The event is cosponsored by the Lao Veterans of America, the Center for
 Public Policy Analysis, Arlington National Cemetery and other
 organizations.
 
 

SOURCE Lao Veterans of America, Inc.; Center for Public Policy Analysis

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