Award Acceptance Speech by Dr. Nguyen Quoc Quan 

on behalf of Dr. Nguyen Dan Que



Mr. President and Distinguished members of the Vietnam Human Rights Network,

The Honorable Loretta Sanchez, Member of U.S. Congress,

Distinguished guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,


I am extremely honored to accept the prestigious 2004 Vietnam Human Rights Award on behalf of my brother, Dr. Nguyen Dan Que, who is currently in prison in Vietnam and could not be here with us today.


Dr. Que has devoted most of his adult life to the non-violent struggle for freedom, democracy, and human rights in Vietnam. As a result of his unwavering struggle against a relentless government, Dr. Que has been imprisoned three times and has spent most of the last 25 years in prison or under house arrest. His life is filled with intimidation, harassment, and torture. The Vietnamese government wants to silence his voice, yet despite 25 years of trying, Hanoi has not been able to break him. They even failed to force him into exile in exchange for his release.  He told them: “Exile is not freedom”.


Being kept in isolation in a remote area in Thanh Hoa Province, Dr. Que has no way of knowing that he is the recipient of the 2004 Vietnam Human Rights Award.  Had he known this, he would be tremendously happy to know that his fellow countrymen share his convictions and recognize his works. The award today also proves to the world that Vietnamese people denounce the unjust treatment of the Vietnamese dissidents by the Hanoi regime and they appreciate and honor people like Dr. Nguyen Dan Que, Historian Pham Que Duong, The Most Venerable Thich Huyen Quang, The Venerable Thich Quang Do,  Father Nguyen Van Ly…


On behalf of my brother and my family, I thank the Vietnam Human Rights Network for selecting Dr. Que for this prestigious award. It supports and validates Dr. Que’s cause. It gives encouragement and hope to him and to all Vietnamese people who dream of living in a free and democratic society.


Ladies and gentlemen,


I would like to take this opportunity to specially thank the US Congress for strongly supporting our just cause. With us today is Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez.  I am honored to be able to work closely with her and her office for so many years. She is a true friend of the Vietnamese American community and a Champion for human rights in Vietnam.  She is one of the two members of Congress who has met Dr. Que in person and is also part of the group of Senators and Congressmen from both parties to nominate Dr. Que for the Nobel Peace Prize every year. Please give her a big hand for all that she has done to help our cause. Finally, I would like to express our thanks to the spiritual leaders, the various associations and organizations, the media around the world, and Vietnamese artists and singers who have been very supportive of Dr. Que and his cause.


Thank you all.



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