Letter to Secretary Genral Kofi Annan of the United Nations On Vietnam

Concerning the Millennium Peace Summit for Spiritual Leaders


The Honorable Kofi Annan

Secretary General
The United Nations
New York, NY 10007

RE: His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the United Nations’ Millennium Peace Summit for Spiritual Leaders.

Dear Mr. Secretary General,

I am a Vietnamese ex-prisoner of conscience released and expelled from Vietnam in September 1998 thanks to international pressure, of which your intervention was most appreciated. Throughout many years I have followed your efforts at the United Nations with admiration and respect. Your tireless works for world peace and reconciliation has inspired people of conscience all over the world. I believe that the United Nations, under your leadership, is moving toward being a true house of human brotherhood, and a genuine vehicle of an emerging global society –a society of all people, all races and all faiths.

I therefore learn with shock and deep regret that His Holiness Dalai Lama, the inspiring and outstanding spiritual leader of Buddhism, has not been invited to the Summit of world spiritual leaders organized by the United Nations. While I strongly support the United Nations’ convention, I protest against the exclusion of His Holiness. I think that the United Nations’ Millennium Peace Summit should include the spiritual leaders of all world faiths to free it from any political pressure.

I hope that you would reverse a non-appropriate decision and invite His Holiness Dalai Lama to the Summit.

With my best wishes to you, I remain
Yours sincerely,

Doan Viet Hoat, Ph.D.
Visiting Scholar of Human Rights
Columbus School of Law
Catholic University of America