Vietnamese monk to organise peace meet in Nepal

Indo-Asian News Service, Nov 29, 2004

Kathmandu, Nepal -- A Buddhist monk from Vietnam who plans to hold a global peace meet at the spot where Buddha was born is asking the people of Nepal to end all violence.

Thay Huyen Dieu, president of the International Buddhist Federation who has been living in Lumbini for over 10 years, intends to hold a World Peace Conference in Lumbini after the three-day World Buddhist Summit there starting Tuesday.

Thay, who founded the Vietnam Phat Quoc monastery in Lumbini, says he is a survivor of the war in Vietnam that killed thousands.

"For decades we fought a war that only ruined us," he said in Kathmandu Sunday while making an appeal for peace in Nepal. "I request all Nepalese to stop the war and join hands for peace."

Calling Nepal a unique country by virtue of being the birthplace of the Buddha, Thay said he had witnessed several miracles in Lumbini, where the founder of Buddhism was born.

The monk said a miracle could occur if the government and the Maoist insurgents choose to hold peace negotiations in Lumbini.

The insurgents have been fighting an eight-year-old war to replace monarchy in Nepal with a communist republic.