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DATE:May 2, 1995
Subject: Outstanding Booklet From Mon National Relief

Published by Mon National Relief Committee
P.O. Box 1, Sangklaburi, Kanchanaburi 71240
(91 pages, with color photos, maps, information about
Halockhani, background on Mon refugees, analysis of
Burmese ethic refugees (reasons for, internal displacement,
UNHCR position, international involvement in the issues,
protection against involuntary repatriation, press coverage

Introductory Notes from Chairman of Mon National Relief

Both the violent physical attack on the 6000 Mon refugees
by the Burmese Army and the immediate inhumane forcible
repatriation of these refugees by the Thai government are
unforgettable for the Mon people and international
committee.  Both the peoples of Burma and the
international community have been amazed by the
cooperation of the Burmese and Thai governments in their
recent physical and mental abuse of the thousands of
innocent human beings in Halockhani and will no doubt be
still wondering what have been the real motive and
motivation behind such a unity between these two regimes. 
All in all, we are still seriously concerned for the well-being
and safe existence of the Mon and other Burmese refugees
who are seeking havens on the Thai-Burma border.  We
cannot yet afford to set our minds at rest because we have
not been given reason to believe that such this unity of the
two governments has stopped.

Amazingly enough, on the very day the Thai government
and Burma's ruling State Law and Order Restoration
Council signed the memorandum of understanding for
exploitation of the massive natural gas in the Mon territory
in Burma, the 6000 Mon refugees were finally pushed back
to their unsafe shelters in the Burmese territory by the Thai
Army.  Frankly we are still wondering whether the interests
of the two governments rest upon the miseries of the Mon
people?  Should this be true, it is not only a crime against
humanity but also a sin against the teachings of the Lord
Buddha for those rulers from the two sides to have so
fiercely squeezed the thousands of the innocent subjects
between them.

As a Buddhist Mon priest, with my utmost grief I wonder
why the Thai and Burmese rulers who are both Buddhists
have with such rancour abused the Mons -- the people who
once introduced both the Burmese and Thai peoples to the
teachings of the Lord Buddha.  With our deepest regrets we
the Mon people nowadays learn that Thailand has also
forgotten the not-too-distant past, the time when the Mons
enjoyed sovereignty and prosperity and maintained a long
lasting cordial relationship with Thailand.  

According to the teachings of the Lord Buddha, there are
basically three kinds of evil that lead to ultimate failures of
those who are subject to them: loba (avarice), dosa (anger)
and moha (ignorance). These three kinds of evil are
interdependent and inextricable.  When the one leads, the
two others follow.  That is, when one has so much greed for
something, then one loses one's wisdom to know right from
wrong and becomes so angry at anyone whom one assumes
as an obstacle in the way of it.  The Lord Buddha also
teaches the four virtues of nobleness that lead to ultimate
successes of those who practice them: metta (loving-kindness), karuna (compass
ion), mudita (sympathetic joy)
and upekkha (equanimity).  These four virtues of nobleness
are also personified in Buddhism as Four Guardians of the
world.  We, all Buddhists, should always bear in mind these
teachings of the Lord Buddha and should endeavour to
lesson the three kinds of evil on one hand and promote the
four virtues of nobleness on the other.

The Thai government should sympathize with the plight of
the people of Burma under the rule of a ruthless brutal
military dictatorship and in the turmoil of the long-term
ongoing civil war in that country which are the main causes
for the Mon and other Burmese ethnic refugees to have
come to seek for sanctuary under its sovereignty.  These
refugees are at the mercy of the Thai authorities.  They owe
debts of gratitude to Thailand for its kindness and sympathy
to them at the time they are in trouble and as such they will
be loyal to Thailand.  They will always respect the Thai laws
and sovereignty during their refuge in Thailand.  And they
will ne er forget the debts of gratitude they owe to Thailand. 
They are just awaiting such a time they can afford to leave
Thailand and return home safely.

Ven. Wongsa Pala
Chairman, Mon National Relief Committee