Accession Number:

ADA513330

Title:

Laos: Background and U.S. Relations

Descriptive Note:

Congressional rept.

Corporate Author:

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS WASHINGTON DC CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2010-01-04

Pagination or Media Count:

13.0

Abstract:

The United States and the Lao Peoples Democratic Republic LPDR cooperate in important areas despite ideological differences and U.S. concerns about alleged human rights abuses against the ethnic Hmong minority. The U.S. Government has gradually upgraded its relations with the communist state, which has strong ties to Vietnam and growing economic linkages with China. Major areas of U.S. assistance and bilateral cooperation include demining and counternarcotics programs, strengthening the countrys regulatory framework and trade capacity, HIVAIDS prevention and treatment, the recovery of Americans missing in action during the Vietnam War, and military education and training. In 2008, the United States and Laos exchanged defense attaches for the first time in over 30 years. The U.S. Government has embarked upon a policy of economic engagement with the LPDR as a means of influencing the future direction of Lao policy. Major U.S. policy considerations include urging the Lao government to accept independent, international monitoring of the resettlement of former Lao-Hmong insurgents and Hmong returnees from Thailand urging the Thai government not to forcibly repatriate Hmong determined to be political refugees increasing assistance for demining activities in Laos granting trade preferences or tariff relief for Lao products, particularly garments and developing programs for sustainable management of the Mekong River.

Subject Categories:

  • Economics and Cost Analysis
  • Government and Political Science
  • Sociology and Law

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE