TOUGH statements by the Clinton Government against Republican plans to take the United States outside an international agreement on the repatriation of boat people will be distributed in Hong Kong's Vietnamese camps today. Printed in Vietnamese, the statements have been issued with the assistance of the United Nations at the request of the acting US Consul-General in Hong Kong, Jeffrey Bader, in an effort to fill a return flight pencilled in for next week. Last month, a Republican-led amendment to a wide-ranging foreign affairs bill proposed that funding be set aside for the resettlement in the US of up to 20,000 boat people. United Nations staff say this move has derailed the voluntary repatriation programme and brought heavy resistance from Vietnamese targeted for deportation. The proposal, which has yet to be passed and which President Bill Clinton has threatened to veto, would take the US outside the Comprehensive Plan of Action (CPA) which governs repatriation. It has been criticised by the Hong Kong Government and other countries of first asylum in the region. 'The US administration is opposed to legislation being discussed that seeks to abandon the CPA at the eleventh hour,' the statement says. The proposed legislation has come about in the wake of criticism levelled by the sponsors of the amendment who say that the method of screening boat people for refugee status was flawed and that many Vietnamese had been wrongly refused. The Hong Kong Government and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) have said violent protests in the territory's Vietnamese camps in recent weeks were a direct result of Republican-led proposals. They have said American flags waved during the protests signal the detainees support for the Republican's legislation. 'The US Government is unequivocal in its belief that return home is the sole remaining option for those who are not refugees,' the statement said. 'We continue to support voluntary repatriation as the preferred option for return to Vietnam of non-refugees. At the same time, we recognise the appropriateness of orderly return programmes under the CPA.' An orderly return flight was scheduled to leave for Hanoi today with about 90 people on board. They were removed from the High Island camp last week in a violent confrontation. The UNHCR chief of mission Jahanshah Assadi said last night he supported the move to hand out an estimated 5,000 copies of the US statements to the territory's 21,000 boat people. 'It is a positive step in disseminating facts relating to the US Government's position and will be a useful counselling tool in encouraging people to volunteer for repatriation,' Mr Assadi said. Recent voluntary repatriation flights have been cancelled after almost 500 people 'de-volunteered'. It is hoped some of these people will re-volunteer. To be financially viable, the flight, pencilled in for Tuesday or Wednesday next week, would have to return about 200 people.