Get Involved

getinvolvedWhile our primary concern is for Sombath’s safe return to his family, friends and colleagues, we should not put the vision and ideas he had been working for on hold.

The ideals Sombath has worked for, including a more humane, sustainable and equitable approach to development, as well as a respect for the earth and the rich cultural heritage that has nourished Lao people for centuries, are also in jeopardy.

So, please, get involved!

1. Direct Pressure: While many Lao government authorities hope the questions will fade, they should be made louder and more urgent. Enforced disappearances, including those of Sombath and others must stop, as should the many other human rights violations that continue.

1.1 Write directly to Lao leaders, including the Prime Minister, the Minister of Public Security, or the Minister of Foreign Affairs, such as in this Urgent Action from Amnesty International:

Screen Shot 2013-01-19 at 8.59.36 AM1.2 Send text messages directly to members of the Lao National Assembly using telephone number from this list:

NA numbers1.3 Send a letter of fax to the Lao Embassy in your country:

Enbassy

1.4 Organize an event at the Lao Embassy in your country, such as those that were held in Bangkok and Manila.

Points to consider::

    • Express your concern for Sombath’s safety, and appeal to the Lao government to do all that is possible to ensure his safe return or a timely resolution to the case.
    • Emphasize the good work Sombath has done for his country, as an educator, a community development worker and a peace practitioner.
    • Note the relationship between economic development and human rights. A modern country is one that respects the rights of all citizens.
    • Indicate that the continued disappearance of a well-known and highly-respected person like Sombath is affecting the international image of Laos, with possible consequences for investment, tourism, and foreign aid.
    • Make full use of the information on this website.  Copy the text or photos (with appropriate citations) and share the links.

2. Indirect Pressure: As can be seen from the Global Concern page, support from around the world has been remarkable and sustained. The Lao government or those supporting it cannot be allowed to return to “business as usual.”

2.1 Lobby and pressure your government, particularly if you live in the ASEAN region, or your country provides significant aid to Laos. See examples from Australia and Thailand.

2.2 Organize a public event about Sombath or related issues, such as these in Japan, Thailand or the Philippines.

2.3 Send information to local news media or organize a public statement of concern.

3. Join a Campaign or Contribute: Numerous human rights organizations and initiatives have taken up the cause of Sombath and related issues:

3.1 Amnesty International has issued an Urgent Action and also released a report “Caught on Camera” in English, Thai and Lao.

3.2 Like the Find Sombat Somphone page at Facebook and spread the word to your friends by liking and sharing the posts:

Sombath FaceBook link3.3 Print and display a missing person poster in English or Lao:

Post-Eng-thumbPost-Lao-thumb

Or fax these to the Lao Embassy in your country!

3.4 Write Letter to Sombath for inclusion on this website, such as these examples. Stand up and speak out for Sombath!

You can make a difference!