Excerpts of Foreword to Standing Ground (by Kay & Kerry Danes)
Foreword by Philip Smith, Center for Public
|Standing Ground: Kay Danes tours U.S., Elucidates Laos, Hmong Gulag in New Book|
|“The ordeal of Kerry and Kay Danes in the mysterious and exotic land of Laos is, perhaps most importantly,
a unique human saga of love, courage, honor, heroism and the triumph of hope in the face of overwhelming odds against a ruthless
Stalinist regime.” - Philip Smith, Executive Director, Center for Public Policy Analysis in Washington, D.C. |
(PressZoom) - Washington, D.C., April
2, 2009 - Australian author Kay Danes has received a special invitation to speak at the prestigious World Affairs Conference
in Boulder, Colorado, from April 6-10, 2009.
Mrs. Danes is also slated to speak at events in Washington, D.C.
later this month. She is an invited keynote speaker at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. and U.S. Congress on April
16-17 regarding human rights violations and political prisoners in Laos and the plight of thousands of Laotian and Hmong refugees
in Thailand and Laos. media-newswire.com/release_1088730.html
Last month, Kay Danes' latest book, "Standing Ground," was release in Australia about her plight in
Philip Smith, Executive Director for the Center for Public Policy Analysis in Washington, D.C., and a former U.S.
Congressional adviser for national security and foreign policy issued the following statement regarding Kay and Kerry Danes
new book “Standing Ground”:
"Readers of the amazing story of Kerry and Kay Danes in Laos will
find it a compelling, richly inspiring and fascinating saga. The unique strategic role of Laos, both during the Vietnam War
and presently, makes this book all the more interesting and important. Standing Ground helps to elucidate the dark and despotic
nature of the current government of Laos, the Lao Peoples Democratic Republic (LPDR).
The ordeal of Kerry and Kay
Danes in the mysterious and exotic land of Laos is, perhaps most importantly, a unique human saga of love, courage, honor,
heroism and the triumph of hope in the face of overwhelming odds against a ruthless Stalinist regime. Stripped of their honor,
dignity, and fundamental liberties while working as security managers in Laos, Kerry and Kay Danes are forced to undergo a
dark journey into a corrupt and brutal prison and gulag system...
Kay Danes, Sheng Xiong to Speak About Laos, Hmong Human Rights Issues
|"The current plight of the Laotian and Hmong
people, both in Thailand and Laos, continues to alarm many in the international community," said Philip Smith, Executive
Director of the CPPA in Washington, D.C. "Kay Danes new book "Standing Ground' and her visit to Washington, D.C.
and the United States to address U.S. policymakers about current issues in Laos comes at a very important and pivotal time,"
(Media-Newswire.com) - Washington, D.C., April 16, 2009 - The Center for Public
Policy Analysis ( CPPA ) will sponsor a National Policy Conference and Press Conference from 8:30 A.M.-11:00 A.M., on Thursday,
April 16, 2009, at the Zenger Room of the National Press Club ( 529 14th Street N.W., Washington, DC 20045 ).
National Policy Conference and Press Conference will be organized in a panel discussion format and is entitled: "Laos,
Hmong Crisis: Refugees, Political Prisoners and Human Rights Violations in Thailand and Laos."
plight of the Laotian and Hmong people, both in Thailand and Laos, continues to alarm many in the international community,"
said Philip Smith, Executive Director of the CPPA in Washington, D.C. "Kay Danes new book ‘Standing Ground' and
her visit to Washington, D.C. and the United States to address U.S. policymakers about current issues in Laos comes at a very
important and pivotal time," continued Smith.
health and well being of Hakit Yang, and the two other Hmong-American citizens from St. Paul Minnesota that he was traveling
with in 2007 when they were arrested by Lao military and security forces, continues to remain an issue to their families and
many in the Lao Hmong-American community," Smith stated. "Like Kay Danes, they were jailed and tortured in the notorious
Phongtong Prison in Vientiane, Laos, by the Lao government while the outside world ignored their terrible fate."
Keynote speakers at the panel discussion at the National Press Club policy conference include: Kay Danes, Australian
author and human rights advocate; Sheng Xiong, spokesperson for Hmong-American citizens of St. Paul, Minnesota imprisoned
in Laos; and Philip Smith, Executive Director, CPPA.
Laos' Secret Prison Camps: Hmong AppealThursday,
14 January 2010, 10:31 am
Press Release: Center for Public Policy Analysis
Laos' Secret Prison Camps: Hmong Appeal for Families
Scoop News, New Zealand, 14 January 2010,
Hmong families from St. Paul, Minnesota and across the United States are appealing for the release of their
relatives held in a secret nextwork of prisons and camps in Laos by the Lao Peoples Army (LPA). In the last several days,
a team of Australian journalists from “The Age” was barred from entering a secret prison, surrounded by razor
wire and LPA troops in the Paksan area of Sayabouri Province. There thousands of Hmong refugees from Thailand’s Huay
Nam Khao and Nong Khai were recently forcibly repatriated....
Kay Danes and her husband
were jailed in Laos in brutal conditions as political prisoners. Danes is the author of the book “Standing Ground”
(New Holland) that details torture and horrific conditions in Lao prisons and detention centers. http://www.media-newswire.com/release_1089564.html
“Over the last three years, political analysts
have painstakingly documented evidence that supports the ongoing persecution of Lao Hmong and Political Prisoners in secret
detention centres throughout Laos. It is a broadly accepted view held by the International Community that the Lao Hmong Refugees
will face similar persecution, arbitrary detention, torture, and possibly death, if forced back to Laos. Amnesty International,
Human Rights Watch and the Foreign Prisoner Support Service have independently reported returnee abuse in Laos” said
Danes who was tortured in Laos. http://www.media-newswire.com/release_1108993.html
Minnesota Twin Cities’ Hmong families are appealing for the release of their relatives held in secret prisons and camps
Twin Cities’ Hmong families have joined others from California, Wisconsin and other states in
appealing for the release of their relatives held in a network of secret prisons and camps in various provinces in Laos. The
Center for Public Policy Analysis (CPPA) in Washington, D.C. has uncovered additional information about the secret prisons
and clandestine gulag system in Laos that has been confirmed by Australian human rights advocates, journalists and others.
"Thousands of Lao Hmong refugees, and many political
and religious prisoners, including Lao student leaders, are being held in secret prisons and detention camps in Laos that
are part of a nation-wide network in various provinces," said Philip Smith, Executive Director of the CPPA in Washington,
D.C."Three Hmong-American citizens from St. Paul, Minnesota, including Mr. Hakit
Yang, also continue to be jailed in a secret prison complex in Sam Neua Province according to reliable sources; significant
numbers of the Laotian and Hmong prisoners and refugees have disappeared or have suffered beatings,torture and abuse in recent
years, including known cases of summary executions in 2007-2009," Smith concluded. Over
4500 Hmong political refugees and asylum seekers were recently forcibly repatriated from Thailand to Laos. Over 8,000 Hmong
were forced from Thailand back to Laos from 2007-09 by the Thai military.“As a Hmong-American, and the wife of Hakit Yang, I still have not received concrete answers
from the Lao government about the arrest and disappearance of my husband; He is still imprisoned in Laos since 2007 with his
two Hmong citizen colleagues from St. Paul, Minnesota,” said Mrs. Sheng Xiong wife of Hakit Yang. http://www.live-pr.com/en/secret-prisons-in-laos-hold-hakit-r1048311013.htm
April 23, 2011 05:10 PM Eastern Daylight Time
Laos, Obama Urged
By Rights Groups, Hmong, to Free 3 Americans
WASHINGTON & MINNEAPOLIS & ST. PAUL, Minn. April 23, 2011 --(BUSINESS WIRE)--A coalition of Laotian and Hmong non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and the Center for Public Policy Analysis
(CPPA), have joined the families of three Hmong-Americans from Minnesota in issuing an international appeal
for the release of their relatives who have been imprisoned in Laos for over three years. The appeal requests that
the Lao government, and U.S. President Barack Obama, work at a higher diplomatic level, with urgent priority,
to release the three Hmong-American citizens.
In August 2007, for unknown reasons, Lao People's Army (LPA) troops and secret police arrested the
three Americans: Mr. Hakit Yang, 24; Mr. Congshineng Yang, 34; and Mr. Trillion Yunhaison, 44.
The Hmong-Americans remain imprisoned in
Laos' Sam Neua province by LPA troops and secret police. The three are being held without charges being filed,
or due process, according to the Foreign Prisoners Support Service (FPSS), the CPPA, human rights organizations,
family members and others.
Mrs. Sheng Xiong, a spokeswoman for the families, and Philip Smith of the CPPA, spoke to Minnesota Public Radio
(MPR) about the case.
“I just wish the Lao government would be upfront ...,” Xiong told MPR.
“We want answers
now from the Lao government about the arrest and continued imprisonment of my husband, Hakit Yang, and the other
two Hmong-Americans...,” Xiong, stated further.
“We would like to ask the President, Barack Obama, and the U.S. Government,
to please seriously help to press the Lao military and government to cooperate in telling the truth about the arrest
and imprisonment of our families in Laos so that they can be released and come home to their loved ones, including
their wives and children,” Mrs. Xiong said.
“Our Lao Hmong families, and the community in St. Paul and Minneapolis, are appealing to the
Lao government... to release my husband, Hakit Yang, and his colleagues...,” Xiong commented.
“We are grateful to Kay Danes and
the FPSS in Australia for helping to bring new and updated information, and evidence, about the arrest and
continued jailing of my husband in Laos-- and we appreciate her book 'Standing Ground' regarding... the plight of
prisoners at Phonthong Prison, in Vientiane, where my husband was jailed...,” Xiong concluded.
“The LPA, and secret police, later
moved the three Americans, including Sheng Xiong's husband Hakit Yang, from Xieng Khouang province, where
they were arrested, to Laos' notorious Phonthong Prison, in the capital of Vientiane, where the men were interrogated,
beaten and tortured, according to eyewitness and multiple sources...,” said Philip Smith, Director of
the CPPA in Washington, D.C.
“In 2009, the
three Hmong-American men were again moved... and are now being held in a secret LPA military-operated prison camp
in Sam Neua Province, Laos,” Smith stated. “We are urging President Obama to press the Lao military
and government, at a higher diplomatic level, to release the three Americans...”
“Additionally, we are also appealing to President Obama, and
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, to assist with the release of other Lao and Hmong political prisoners
and religious dissidents in Laos...,” Smith concluded.
“We condemn, in the strongest terms, the continued imprisonment by the
Lao military and communist officials in Laos of Mr. Hakit Yang, Mr. Conghineng Yang and Trillion Yunhaison, who
are U.S. citizens still being held without charge in horrific conditions in Laos by the LPA and secret police,”
said Christy Lee, Director of Hmong Advance, Inc. (HAI) in Washington, D.C.
The NGOs joining the
Hmong-American families in urging Laos, and the White House, to help release the Americans include the CPPA, HAI,
Hmong Advancement, United Lao for Human Rights and Democracy, Lao Human Rights Council, Hmong Students Association,
Lao Students for Democracy, United League for Democracy in Laos, Laos Institute for Democracy and Lao Veterans
16, the CPPA issued an appeal regarding the imprisoned Hmong-Americans and human rights violations in Laos.
CPPA - Center for Public
Center for Public Policy Analysis
Helen Cruz, 202-543-1444
Gold Coast News Australia, March 6, 2010
spent almost 11 months detained in a prision in the Lao capital of Vientiane. IN the cramped confines of the 3m x 3m cell
she shared with five other inmates for almost 11 months is a sewage tank stamped with Kay
Danes' footprints. Day after day, week a
Laos, Hmong Human Rights Activist
Nominated For Australian of the Year Award
Press Release ---
D.C., Brisbane and Canberra, Australia, November 3, 2011Democracy in Laos, Inc.; the Lao Students Movement
for Democracy; United Lao for Human Rights and Democracy, Inc.; Lao Institute for Democracy; Hmong Advance, Inc.; Hmong
Advancement, Inc.; the Lao Veterans of America, Inc.; and, others.
Author, human rights advocate and humanitarian activist
Kay Danes has been nominated for the Queensland category of the Australian of the Year Award. The nomination was hailed
by the Center for Public Policy Analysis (CPPA) and a coalition of Laotian and Hmong non-governmental and human rights
organizations including: the United League for
Danes, who was arrested in 2000, was brutally
interrogated and tortured in the notorious Phonthong prison in Vientiane, Laos, along with Laotian, Hmong and foreign
prisoners. She is now an author and human rights activist.
“Her critical testimony
about her interrogation and torture in Laos, and that of other victims, helped to develop deeper understanding and awareness
about the terrible fate of those languishing in foreign prisons who are often imprisoned unjustly in horrific and inhumane
conditions in violation of international law,” Smith stated. http://centerforpublicpolicyanalysis.org
“Kay Danes has been a tireless and effective international advocate for human rights, womens' rights,
the suffering of torture victims, and the plight of refugees and those imprisoned in horrific conditions in Laos, Afghanistan,
and other nations around the world,” Smith said.
“Kay Danes distinguished
work, especially as it relates to the Laotian and Hmong people, refugees and foreign prisoners, has been crucial in
helping to bring international attention to the suffering and voiceless people of Laos and other countries,” Smith
continued. "Danes has researched and spoken about the fate of imprisoned and missing Lao student pro-democracy
demonstrators as well as three Hmong-Americans from St. Paul, Minnesota, including Mr. Hakit Yang, who have been jailed
in harsh conditions for years under the Communist regime in Laos."
will be announced in Brisbane on November 17, 2011. Winners will join recipients from other states and territories in Australia
as finalists for the national awards that will presented in Canberra, Australia, in January 2012.
Kay Danes has authored important books about human rights violations and torture in Laos including “Standing
Ground” (New Holland Publishers, Australia), released in 2009. In the same year, she was invited to speak in the
United States about her experiences in Laos, and as an advocate for the Foreign Prisoners Support Service, at the World
Affairs Council, National Press Club and U.S. Congressional Forum on Laos.
Dane's book "Standing Ground" was cited and acclaimed by the American Authors'
Association and others.
www.americanauthorsassociation.com/ images/ Standing%20Ground%20Press%20Release%20March%2009.pdf
Contact: Maria Gomez or Philip Smith
Tele. (202) 543-1444
CPPA - Center for Public Policy Analysis
2020 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, D.C. 20006 USA
CPPA - Center
for Public Policy Analysis
2020 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, D.C. 20006 USA
Maria Gomez or Philip Smith
Communications / Public Affairs Department