www.laoalliance.org - Older News 1-6 2013
Firmenname - Slogan

ສານ ພປລ ສັນຣະເສີນຂະບວນການປະທ້ວງຂອງລາວນອກ ທີ່ມີນີໂຊຕາ ສະຫະຣັຖ ປະນາມຄະນະນຳສູງສຸດຝ່າຍທະຫານຂອງວຽດນາມ ທີ່ເດີນທາງມາສັ່ງການ ພວກຫຸ່ນຮັບໃຊ້ ທີ່ອາໃສຢູ່ນອກປະເທດ
ໃນນາມ ຜູ້ຕາງຫນ້າອົງການ ພັນທະມິຕ ເພື່ອປະຊາທິປະໄຕໃນລາວ ຂໍສະແດງຄວາມສັນຣະເສີນຢ່າງສຸດຊຶ້ງມາ ຍັງຄະນະກັມມະການ ຈັດການປະທ້ວງແລະ ຜູ້ເຂົ້າຮ່ວມປະທ້ວງທຸກໆທ່ານ ທີ່ເດີນທາງມາເຂົ້າຮ່ວມປະທ້ວງໃນວັນທີ່21 ມິຖຸນາ 2013 ທີ່ຣັຖ ມີນີໂຊຕາ ສະຫະຣັຖ ໃນໂອກາດທີ່ຄະນະນຳສູງສຸດຝ່າຍທະຫານຂອງວຽດນາມຄອມມູນິສ ໄດ້ເດີນທາງມາແຫ່ງດັ່ງກ່າວເພື່ອຫວັງມາສັ່ງການພວກຫຸ່ນຮັບໃຊ້ ທີ່ ເອີ້ນວ່າ ແນວລາວສ້າງຊາດ ທີ່ອາໃສດິນແດນແຫ່ງອິສະຣະພາບຂອງສະຫະຣັຖ ແຕ່ມີຫົວຮັບໃຊ້ ພວກຜະເດັດການຄອມມູນິ ສວຽດນາມ ທີ່ກືນກິນລາວ .
      ການປະທ້ວງຂອງພວກທ່ານຄັ້ງນີ້ ໄດ້ສະແດງເຖິງ ມີຄວາມຕັດສິນໃຈຢ່າງເດັດດຽ່ວຂອງຄວາມເປັນລາວ ທີ່ໃຊ້ສິດຂອງຕົນເອງ ຢ່າງຖືກຕ້ອງໃນດິນແດນອິສະຣະພາບ ທີ່ບໍ່ຍຶອມກົ້ມຫົວໃຫ້ວຽດ ນາມມາຢຽບຢ່ຳສິດທິຂອງລາວ,ເຖິງຍາມແລ້ວ ລາວເຮົາຜູ້ຮັກຊາດ ແລະຮັກປະຊາທິປະໄຕ ຢູ່ໃນແລະນອກປະເທດໃນທົ່ວໂລກ ຕ້ອງຈັບມືຖື ແຂນກັນໃຫ້ແຫນ້ນ ເພື່ອພ້ອມກັນຂັບໄລ່ ພວກທີ່ມາຮຸກ ຮານຊາດລາວເຮົາໃຫ້ຫນີອອກໄປ ແລະ ພັກດັນໃຫ້ມີການ ປຽ່ນແປງການປົກຄອງ ໃນລາວໄປສູ່ປະຊາທິປະໄຕອັນແທ້ຈິງ ເພື່ອຮັບ ປະກັນສິດທິຂອງຄວາມເປັນ ເຈົ້າຂອງປະເທດຊາດລາວ ເຮົາໃຫ້ປະກົດຜົນເປັນຈິງ.   
       ພວກເຮົາຈະບໍ່ຍອມໃຫ້ວຽດນາມຄອມມູນິສ ມາກ້າວກ່າຍສິດທິຂອງຄົນລາວເຮົາຢູ່ໃນແລະນອກປະເທດ ຕໍ່ໄປຢ່າງເດັດຂາດ.
 
ດ້ວຍຄວາມນັບຖື
ດຣ. ບຸນທອນ ຈັນທະລາວົງ-ວີເຊີ
ປະທານ ພປລ
 
ບົດວິຈານ:     ການຄຸ້ມຄອງລາວ- ຂອງແກວ ແລະ ຈີນ
                                                                        ໂດຍ: ຊຽງຄຳ 
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Protest at Minnesota State Capital on June 21st 2013 Part 2
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Protest at Minnesota State Capital on June 21st 2013 Part 1
  
Anti-China protest in Rancho Mirage 
6-7-13
ທ່ານ ແສງ ຈິດດາໄລ ແລະ ທ່ານ ຄຳພຸກ ຮ່ວມກັບທີມງານລາວທີວີລາວໂອເວີຊີ ເຂົ້າຮ່ວມການເດີນຂະບວນປະທ້ວງໃນວັນທີ່ 7ມິຖຸນາ 2013 ທີ່ກາລີຟໍເນັຽ ສະຫະຣັຖ ໃນໂອກາດ ທ່ານ Xi Jinping ປະທານປະເທດຈີນ ມາພົບກັບທ່ານ Obama  ປະທານາທິດີສະຫະຣັຖ
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Anti-china protest
Vietnamese protest visit by China's presidentHundreds rally in Westminster before boarding busses to Rancho Mirage.
 
ho-chi-minh-statue-in-savannakheth
RFA News
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http://www.rfa.org/lao/politics/ho-chi-minh-statue-in-savannakheth-05222013130235.html#.UZ3VzDPmeiI.facebook&ldquo
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ADL Statement June 5th 2013
ADL Statement on June 5 2013. Refugees from North Korea has been taken back to North Korea. Human rights organization's protests.
 
ພວກນັກເຄື່ອນໄຫວຮວມຕົວກັນຢູ່ໃກ້ສະຖານທູດຈີນທີ່ກຸງໂຊລ ຮຽກຮ້ອງໃຫ້ຈີນບໍ່ໃຫ້ສົ່ງຊາວເກົາຫຼີເໜືອທີ່ໜີ ອອກຈາກປະເທດກັບຄືນເກົາຫຼີເໜືອໃນການປະທ້ວງບັ້ນນຶ່ງເມື່ອເດືອນກຸມພາ2012.
ພວກນັກເຄື່ອນໄຫວຮວມຕົວກັນຢູ່ໃກ້ສະຖານທູດຈີນທີ່ກຸງໂຊລ ຮຽກຮ້ອງໃຫ້ຈີນບໍ່ໃຫ້ສົ່ງຊາວເກົາຫຼີເໜືອທີ່ໜີ ອອກຈາກປະເທດກັບຄືນເກົາຫຼີເໜືອໃນການປະທ້ວງບັ້ນນຶ່ງເມື່ອເດືອນກຸມພາ2012.
 
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 Anger over N. Korean refugees repatriated from Laos
By Park Chan-Kyong (AFP) – 8 hours ago    SEOUL — Human rights monitors and North Korean defector groups voiced anger and concern Thursday over the forced repatriation to Pyongyang of nine young refugees captured in Laos.  The case has aroused strong public feeling in South Korea. Some have accused the foreign ministry, which has declined to comment on the issue in any detail, of failing in its duty to protect the refugees once they got to Laos.  Most North Korean refugees begin their escape by crossing into China and then try to make it to third countries -- often in Southeast Asia -- where they seek permission to resettle in South Korea.  If they are caught and returned to the North they can face severe punishment.  The nine arrested in Laos around three weeks ago were returned to China on Monday and then flown back to Pyongyang the next day.  Laos had previously been seen as a relatively safe and popular transit point, and its decision in this case to return the nine refugees -- aged between 15 and 23 -- prompted strong expressions of concern.   
 copyright 2013 AFP
 
 Dr. Bounthone meets Sam Rainsy at the Wilson Center in Washington DC
 More Informations:
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International Community Must Help Cambodian Democracy, Opposition Leader Says (in Khmer)
Opposition leader Sam Rainsy joined a panel of experts in Washington on Wednesday to discuss further promotion of democracy in Cambodia. The talk, joined by about 100 participants at the Wilson Center...
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Sam Rainsy's final speech et the Wilson Center
The Opposition leader of Cambodia at the Wilson Center in Washington DC. May
  
 
Rainsy points.pdf (PDF — 14 KB)
 
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ADL Statment 22.05.13
ADL Statment about the Lao PDR's expressions against the peaceful change towards to democracy.ເອກະສານການເມືອງ ສະບັບພິເສດຂອງ ພປລ ຕ້ານກັບການໂຄສະນາຊວນເຊື່ອຂອງ ພັກລັດ ສປປລ ທີ່ຫວັງສະກັດກັ້ນການປຽ່ນແປງແບບ...
  
The ADL events in the USA:
- Demonstrations in front of the Lao/Vietnamese embassies
International Forum on the Current Human Rights Situation in the Lao PDR    Washington, DC, May 4-7, 2013
- Meetings in New York and Washington DC
Concerned about thedeteriorating situation of human rights in the Lao PDR, the Alliance forDemocracy (ADL) in Laos has organized a forum to address a range ofparticularly troubling issues:
  •  Landgrabs and land rights
  • Decision making without popular participation
  • Repression of alternative viewpoints and the Sombath Somphone case
 For more informations click here or visit our Event side 
  Click on Thumbnail to open Text:
 
Carving up Laos
ໜ້າສັງເວດ ປະຊາຊົນລາວ ບັນດາເຜົ່່າທີ່ເປັນຜູ້ຮັບກັມ ຍ້ອນພວກຜູ້ນໍາ ປົກຄອງຊາດ ດ້ວຍການສແວງຫາຜົນປໂຍດສ່ວນຕົວ- ສໍ້ລາດ ບັງຫຼວງ, ຂາຍຊັພໃນດິນ ສິນໃນນໍ້າ, ຂາຍຊາດ ຂາຍປະຊາຊົນ. ຂໍໃຫ້ດວງວິນຍານຂອງ ບັນພະບຸຣຸທລາວ ຈົ່ງມາສິງແລະສາບແຊ່ງໃຫ້ ພວກນັກ ປົກຄອງຂາຍຊາດເຫຼົ່ານີ້ ໃຫ້ດັບວາຍ ຈິບຫາຍ, ຕົກນະລົກ ອະເວຈີ ຮ້ອຍໂຄດຂອງ ພວກເຂົາ. ​
The Edge Review: 5 -11 April 2013
By Marwaan Macan-Markar / Bangkok
When they gathered for the second annual session of the National Assembly last December, Laotian lawmakers may have had a reason to feel buoyant. The communist-ruled country appeared on the verge of gaining international respectability. The preceding months had seen this impoverished nation shed some of its image as a diplomatic backwater in the region.The remake came in stages. In July, Hillary Clinton flew into Vientiane, becoming the first US Secretary of State to visit the landlocked country in 57 years.Then, in October, the World Trade Organisation approved Laos’ application to join the WTO, signalling that this agrarian nation had joined the world of international commerce. And finally, in November, Laos hosted its most important international gathering, the Asia-Europe Meeting (Asem), which drew world leaders from Asia and Europe.But by the time the 12-day session of the country’s parliament drew to a close in December, the assembly had traded open buoyancy for secrecy, raising questions about the prospect of a liberal political culture taking root. Nothing was more deafening to some community leaders than the assembly’s decision to silence one of the rare new avenues of openness – a hotline for the public to call the 132-member parliament.This rollback in a country where political dissent has traditionally not been tolerated was hard to ignore. After all, the first annual session of the parliament, held in July, seemed to indicate that the nod given to greater openness in recent years by the ruling Lao People’s Revolutionary Party (LPRP) might be genuine. There were close to 300 calls that citizens made using the hotline, a number that was widely publicised in the local media.Just why the parliament backtracked has not been lost on Vientiane-based diplomats and other observers. Nearly 280 complaints registered during that July session involved a host of grievances related to land issues: a lack of adequate compensation to the public, the awarding of concessions to foreign investors that has forced local communities from their lands, land-grabs and other questionable land deals.“Local anger towards land-related issues has been discussed in the open more, certainly since 2011,” one Western diplomat confirmed. “From what we hear, some panic has set in within the party hierarchy. The reaction is to clamp down on the voices raising these issues.“There are people in the party and government who are profiting from corrupt land deals.”It is an issue that continues to dog Laos, which in 2012 ranked as the 160th most corrupt country in the world out of 183 surveyed by the global anti-graft watchdog, Transparency International.“The many local voices complaining about land conflicts were coming in the way of the deal makers,” the diplomat added.This nexus, some Lao watchers say, could be behind the abduction in December of Sombath Somphone, the country’s most famous civil society leader. The 61-year- old Sombath, who champions grassroots concerns and the need for sustainable development, vanished while the National Assembly was still in session.He was stopped on the evening of Dec. 15 at a police checkpoint in Vientiane. Grainy video footage from a nearby CCTV camera, viewable on YouTube, shows the last images his family and friends have of him. It reveals Sombath’s jeep parked at the checkpoint and him being led away from the police post by two unidentified men.“To date, we have had no news whatsoever about Sombath, where he is, in what condition, or even if he is alive,” Ng Shui-Meng, his Singaporean wife, revealed to The Edge Review. “I have wracked my brain to try and think why this happened and why now and not before, and I find no real answers.”The link between Sombath’s abduction and the growing public resentment over land conflicts featured during recent interviews with Laotian and foreign activists and development and aid workers. They point to a rising tide of rural anger over questionable land deals, which could loom as the gravest political challenge facing the secretive communist regime, which has ruled the country with an iron fist since December 1975.Conflicts over land featured prominently in October during a gathering of foreign and local community activists at the Asia-Europe People’s Forum (AEPF). The soft-spoken Sombath was a leading organiser of that four-day event, and local complaints about dubious land deals with foreign companies were on full display during the exchanges in Vientiane. Sombath also had a hand in drafting a document called the “Lao People’s Vision,” which conveyed grassroots sentiments expressed at 16 provincial level gatherings that preceded the AEPF.“The foreign ministry approved the space for civil society at the AEPF as a sign that the country was opening up,” says Shalmali Guttal, senior researcher at Focus on the Global South, a Bangkok-based think tank. “It fit in with the attitude of Laos policymakers over the past five to six years of reaching out to their own people, their critics. The impression was that things were changing.”The political space for public complaints regarding land issues marked this shift, a rare opening that is credited to former Prime Minister Bouasone Bouphavang. He chaired meetings that addressed land issues a year after coming to office in 2006. He appeared sympathetic to rural communities threatened by land concessions to foreign investors, and his views were even widely reported in the state-owned newspapers.Kham-oun Boupha, a former official in the prime minister’s office, had also echoed those views. “Our policy is to make people richer,” Kham-oun, who was also the head of the national land management authority, told local newspapers in May 2009, when local resentment at land purchases by foreign companies began to surface.‘If we take land from people that we have already given them for use in production, trade and services, and allocate it for the (foreign) concession agreement, I think we are in opposition to our own policy,” he said.Indeed, the popularity of a radio programme hosted by Laotian journalist Ounkeo Souksavanh was largely driven by villagers calling in from across the country to talk about the impact land deals were having on their lives. “I had a hotline that the audience could call and they often talked about the rise in land conflicts in their community,” says Ounkeo, whose hourly weekday programme ran for four years before being abruptly pulled off the air in January 2012.‘It is possible that this is the reason why the programme was shut down.”Laos’s land policy, which opened up opportunities for foreign investors in 1986, has resulted in over two million hectares of land being converted to lease or concession deals, with companies from Vietnam and China, two of the top three foreign investors in the country, accounting for the largest slice of the 2,000 approved projects. These include copper and gold mines, as well as industrial scale rubber and cassava plantations, among other projects.Vietnam, the other communist-ruled country in Southeast Asia, tops the list of foreign investors in Laos, with investments totalling US$4.9 billion, followed by Thailand, with US$4 billion. Vietnamese agricultural investments abound in southern Laos, while China’s US$3.9 billion in investments are concentrated in the hilly terrain in northern Laos, close to the Chinese border.In fact, growing land disputes between local villagers and Chinese investors in northern Laos prompted the Lao prime minister to issue an order last July for a moratorium on granting new land concessions for industrial plantations and mining in the area till 2015. “This is to freeze concessions for rubber plantations and mining projects,” says Manothong Vongsay, deputy director general at the ministry of planning and investment. “Separately, the national assembly is also working on a land policy law.”Attracting foreign investors to tap the country’s abundant natural resources is a key policy of Vientiane, which still depends heavily on foreign aid to care for its 6.5 million people, a third of whom live in absolute poverty. Overseas development assistance accounts for nearly 70 per cent – or US$1.7 billion — of the national budget.“The problem of poverty in Laos will only grow if the government continues with policies where corrupt deals have threatened the land held by rural communities,” says a Laotian grassroots campaigner. “For rural people, land is their life, their blood, and that is why they are fighting back. And the government is aware of this awakening.”

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Laos Heuschrecken gegen den Hunger
ARD Weltspiegel.UN und EU setzen auf Insektenzucht gegen den Hunger in Laos
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Laos Kambodscha Vietnam Mekong im Stau - Irrsinn oder Fortschritt
ARD Weltspiegel 10.03.2013. Der Mekong ist noch ein großer Strom im Naturzustand - wild und unreguliert. Noch - denn es gibt erste Anzeichen dafür, dass sich etwas ändert: Zum Beispiel ein Brückenbau ...
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Die Teufelsdroge
ARD Weltspiegel. Jugendliche mit Drogenproblemen in Laos.
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Tropenholz im Baumarkt
SWR 29.09.2008. Illegal abgeholztes Tropenholz aus Laos, legal in Deutschen Baumärkten
  

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ຊາວລາວພາກັນປະທ້ວງ ຢູ່ປາຣີ
ຊາວລາວຢູ່ ປາຣີ ປະທ້ວງເພື່ອຮຽກຮ້ອງໃຫ້ ຣັຖບານ ສປປລາວ ປ່ອຍຕົວທ່ານສົມບັດສົມພອນ
 
Lao-american citizen disappeared while visiting Savannakhet
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Radio report:



ຊາວລາວໃນຕ່າງປະເທດປະທ້ວງຮຽກຮ້ອງໃຫ້ຊອກຫາທ່ານສົມບັດ ສົມພອນ

ເປັນ​ເວລ​າ​ສອງ​ເດືອນ​ປາຍ ທີ່ ທ່ານ ສົມບັດ ສົມ​ພອນ​ ​ນັກ​ພັດ​ທະ​ນາ​ສັງ​ຄົມ ໄດ້​ຫາຍສາບ​ສູນ​ໄປ​ ໃນ​ຕອ​ນແລງ
ວັນ​​​ ເສົາ ທີ15 ​ເດືອນທັນວາ ປີ 2012 ຈາກຖະ​ໜົນ​​ເສັ້ນທີ່ ທ່ານໄດ້​ໃຊ້ທ່ຽວ​ໄປ​ມາ​ແຕ່​ລະ​ວັນ ອັນ​ເປັນ​ບ້ານ​ເກີດ​ເມືອງນອນບ່ອນ​ທີ່ທ່ານເຕີບ​ໃຫ​ຍ່ ແລະສາມາດບອກ​ໄດ້​ທຸກ​ຮ່ອມ​ທຸກ​ແຈ ໃນ​ເຂດ​ນະ​ຄອ​ນ​ຫລວງວຽ​ງ​ຈັນ. ​
ເຖິງ​ແມ່ນ​ວ່າຈະ​ມີ​ຫລັກ​ຖານ​ ຈາກ​ບັນທຶກ ​ກ້ອງ​ວົງຈອນປິດ​ ທີ່​ຕິດຕັ້ງ​​ໄວ້ຢູ່​ຖະໜົນ​ ບ່ອນ​ທີ່ມີຄົນເຫັນ ​ທ່ານ​ສົມ​
ພອ​ນ ເປັນຄັ້ງ​ສຸດທ້າຍນັ້ນກໍ​ຕາມ ຕົກ​ມາ​ເຖິງ​ເປັດຈຸບັນ​ນີ້ ກໍຍັງ​ບໍ່​ມີ​ຄໍາ​ອະທິບາຍອັນ​ກະຈ່າງ​ແຈ້ງ ຈາກ​ເຈົ້າ​ໜ້າ​ທີ່ລັດຖະບານ ສປປ ລາວ​ວ່າ ແມ່ນ​ຫຍັງ​ໄດ້ເກີດຂື້ນ​ແກ່ ທ່ານສົມ​ພອນ​​ ແລະ​ທ່ານຍັງ​ມີ​ຊີ​ວິດ​ ຫລື​ວ່າ​ ທ່ານ​ໄດ້ຈາກ​ໂລກ​ມະ​ນຸດ​ໄປແລ້ວ.
​ການ​ຫາຍ​ສາບ​ສູນ​​ໄປ​ຂອງ ທ່ານສົມ​ບັດ ສົມ​ພອນ ​​ອັນ​ບໍ່​ຄາດ​ຝັນໄດ້​ກໍ່​ໃຫ້ເກີດຄື້ນຟອງນອງ​ໜັ່ນ​ໄປທົ່ວ​ໂລກ ​ເພາະວ່າ ທ່ານ​ ​ສົມ​ພອນ ເປັນ​ບຸກຄົນ​​ສໍາຄັນ ​ທີ່​ໄດ້​ສ້າງ​ຄຸນງາມຄວາມດີ ​ແລະໄດ້​ວາງ​ບົ​ດບາດ​​ ເປັນ​ແບບຢ່າງ
ອັນດີ​ເລີດໃຫ້​ແກ່ ​ປະຊາ​ຄົມ​ລາວ ຊຶ່ງອົງ​ການສາກົນ​ທົ່ວ​ໂລກ​ພາ​ກັນ​ຍ້ອງ​ຍໍ​ຮັບ​ຮູ້ເປັນ​ກຽດ​ຢ່າງສູງ.
ຊີວິດຄວາມ​ເປັນ​ມາຂອງ ທ່ານສົມບັດ ສົມ​ພອນ ​ນັ້ນເປັນ​ທີ່ໜ້າ​ສັນລະ​ເສີນ​ ທ່ານເກີດ​ທີ່ ບ້ານດອນ​ຂຽວ ​​ເມືອງ ໜອງ​ບົກ ແຂວງ​ຄໍາ​ມ່ວນ ເປັນ​ລູກ​ຊາຍ​ກົກຂອງອ້າຍ​ເອື້ອຍນ້ອງ​ດ້ວຍ​ກັນ 8 ຄົນ. ​ໃນ​ຕົ້ນ​ປີ 1970 ທ່ານ​ໄດ້​ຮັບ​ທຶນ​ສຶກສາ​ໄປຮຽນຢູ່​ທີ່ ມະຫາວິທະຍາ​ໄລລັດຮາ​ວາຍ ໄດ້​ຮັບ​ປະລິນ​ຍາ​ຕີຝ່າຍ​ການ​ສຶກສາ ​​​ໃນ​ປີ 1974 ​ຈາກສູນ​ກາງ​ຕາ​ເວັນອອກ
ຕາເວັນ​ຕົກ ຫລື East West Center ແລະ​ໄດ້​ຮັບປະລິນຍາ​ໂທ ຝ່າຍ​ກະ​ເສດ​ສາດ​ໃນ​ປີ 1978​​.
ເຖິງ ​ແມ່ນ​ລະບອບ​ການ​ປົກຄອງ​ໄດ້​ປ່ຽນ​ແປງ​ໄປ​ໃນ ບ້ານ​ເກີດ​ເມືອງ​ນອນ ຕອນ​ທີ່​ ທ່ານ​ຍັງ​ສຶກສາ​ຢູ່​ຕ່າງປະ​ເທດ​ກໍ​ຕາມ ທ່ານສົມ​ພອນ ກໍໄດ້​ຕັດ​ສິນ​ໃຈ​ກັບຄືນ​ເມື່ອ​ບ້ານ​ເກີດ​ ດ້ວຍ​ຄວາມມຸ້ງ​ມາດ​ ປາດ​ຖະ​ໜາ​ອັນ​ແຮງ​ກ້າ ຢາກ​ອຸ​ທິດຄວາມ​ຮູ້​ທີ່ຕົນ​ຮຽນມານັ້ນ ​​ຊ່ວຍ​ສ້າງ ສາພັດທະນາປະ​ເທດ​ຊາດ ​ໃຫ້​ພົ້​ນຈາກ​ຄວາມ​ທຸກ​ຈົນ ແລະ​ກ້າວ​ໄປ​ສູ່ການ​ກຸ້ມ​ຕົນ​ເອງເພື່ອ ໃຫ້ຫລຸດ​ພົ້ນ​ຈາກ​ການ​ເປັນ​ປະ​ເທດ​ດ້ອຍ​ພັດທະນາ.
​ເປັນ​ເວ​ລາ​ 30 ກວ່າ​ປີ​ ທີ່ທ່ານ​ສົມ​ພອນໄດ້​ບືກ​ບື​ນ​ສູ້​ທົນກັບ​ວຽກການ.  ​​ທ່ານ​ເປັນ​ຜູ້ນຳ​ພາ​ຄົນ​ທຳ​ອິດ ໃນ​ການ​ປູກຝັງ​ໃຫ້​​ໄດ້​ຜົນໃນ​ປີ 1996 ທ່ານໄດ້​ຮັບອະນຸຍາດ​ຈາກ ກະຊວງ​ສຶກສາ​ທິການ ​ຮ່ວມ​ສ້າງ ສູນອົ​ບ​ຮົມ​ຮ່ວມ​​ພັດທະນາ ຫລື Participatory Development Training Center ທີ່​ເອີ້ນ​ຫຍໍ້​ວ່າ PADETS ຂື້ນ​ມາ​ເພື່ອນສິດ​ສອນບັນ​ດາ​​ຊາວໜຸ່​ມລາວ ​ແລະ​ເຈົ້າ​ໜ້າ​ທີ່​ທ້ອງ​ຖິ່ນ​ຂອງລັດ ຖະບານ ​ກ່ຽວ​ກັບ​ວຽກ​ງານ​ການພັດທະນາ ​ເປັນເວລາຫລາຍ​ປີ ​ແລະມັນ​ກໍເປັນອົງການຈັດ​ຕັ້ງ​ປະຊາ​ຄົມ​ທໍານອງ​ 
ນີ້​ແຫ່ງ​ດຽວ ທີ່​ມີ​ຢູ່​ໃນ ສປປ ລາວ.
ດ້ວຍ​ຄວາມ​ຂະຫຍັນ​ຂັນ​ແຂງ​​ທາງ​ດ້ານ​ຜົນງານ ​ແລ​ະ​ເປັນ​ແບບ​ຢ່າງ​ທີ່​ດີ​ເລີດ ຢູ່​ໃນ​ປະ​ເທດ​ກໍາລັງ​ພັດທະນາ ທ່ານ​ສົມບັດ ສົມ​ພອນ ​ຈຶ່ງໄດ້ຮັບຄວາມຍ້ອງ​ຍໍ​ຈາກ​ວົງ​ການສາກົນ​ ມາ​ເປັນ​ລໍາ​ດັບ ​​ຈົນໄດ້​ຮັບ​ລາງວັນ ​​ຣາມົນ ມາ​ກ​ໄຊ​ໄຊ (Ramon Magsaysay) ຊຶ່ງ​ເປັນ​ລາງວັນ ກຽດຕິ​ຍົດ ທີ່ສູງ​ສຸດປະ​ຈໍາປີ 2005 ຢູ່​ໃນ​ເຂດ​​ເອ​ເຊຍ.​ ​
ການ​ຫາຍ​ສາບ​ສູນ​ໄປຂອງ ທ່ານ ສົມບັດ ສົມ​ພອນ ​​ໄດ້​ສ້າງ​​ຜົນສະທ້ອນ​ທາງ​ດ້ານ​​ສິດ​ທິ​ມະ​ນຸດ ພາ​ໃຫ້ບັນ​ດາປະຊາ​ຄົມສາກົນ ​ອັນ​ມີ ສະຫະພາບ​ຢູ​ໂຣບ ອົງການ​ສະຫະປະຊາ​ຊາດ ສະຫະລັດອາ​ເມຣິກາ ​ແລະປະເທດ​ສະມາຊິກສະມາ
ຄົມ​ບັນດາ​ປະ​ຊາຊາດ​ໃນເຂດ​ເອ​ເຊຍ​ອາຄະ​ເນ ຫລື​ອາ​ຊ່ຽນ ຮວມທັງ​ໝົດ​ 50 ກວ່າ​ປະ​ເທດ ໄດ້ພາ​ກັນຮຽກຮ້ອງໃຫ້
ລັດຖະບານ ສປປ ລາວ ສືບສວນ​ຊອກ​ຫາແລະ​ພາ​ໂຕທ່ານ ສົມບັດ ສົມ​ພອນ ນັ້ນຄືນມາ. ​

ຕົກ​ມາ​ເຖິງເທົ້າ​ປັດ​ຈຸ​ບັນ​ນີ້ ຄວາມ​ວິ​ຕົກ​ກັງວົນ​ຍັງ​ດໍາ​ເນີນ​ຢູ່​ຕໍ່​ມາ​​ໂດຍ​​ບໍ່​ເຫືອດ​ຫາຍ. ​
ໂຕ​ຢ່າງ​ກໍ​ຄື ​ໃນ​ວັນ​ເສົາ ​ທີ 9 ​ເດືອນ​ກຸ​ມພາທີ່​ຜ່ານ​ມາ​ນີ້ ຊາວ​ລາວ​ຈໍານວນນຶ່ງ ພາຍ​ໃຕ້
ການ​ ນໍາພາ​ຂອງອົງການ​ພັນທະ​ມິດ​ເພື່ອ​ປະຊາທິປະ​ໄຕ​ໃນ​ລາວ ທີ່ມີ​ສາຂາ​ຢູ່ປະ​ເທດ​​ຝຣັ່ງ​ ​​​​ເຢຍຣະ​ມັນ ກາ​ນາ​ດາ ອອສ​ເຕ​ຣເລຍ ​ແລະ​ສະຫະລັດ ​ຮ່ວ​ມ​​ກັບອີກເກືອບ​ຊາວ​ອົງ​ການ​ຈັດ​ຕັ້ງ​ຂອງປະ​ຊາ​ຄົມ​ລາວ​ຢູ່​ທົ່ວ​ໂລກ ໄດ້​ພ້ອມ​ພຽງ​ກັນທໍາ​ການຮຽກ​ຮ້ອງ​ ໂດຍ​ການ​ສົ່ງ​ສານ​ປະ
​ທ້ວງຂອງ ຂະ​ບວນ​ການຈັດ​ຕັ້ງ ແລະ​ຊຸ​ມ​ຊົນ​ລາວ ເພື່ອ​ປະ​ຊາ​ທິ​ປະ​ໄຕ ​ຕໍ່​ການ​ຫາຍສ​າບ​ສູນ ຂອງ​ທ່ານ ສົ​ມ​ບັດ​ ສົມ​ພອນ. ​
ເອກ​ກະ​ສານ​ດັ່ງ​ກ່າວ​ໄດ້ຖືກ ​ນຳ​ສົ່ງເຖິງ ທ່ານ​ທອງ​ສິງ ທຳ​ມະ​ວົງ  ນາ​ຍົກ​ລັດ​ຖະ​ມົນ​ຕີແຫ່ງ ສ​ປ​ປ ລາວ ດັ່ງ​ທ່ານ​ຈະ​ໄດ້​ຍິນ​​​ໃນ​ການສໍາພາດຂອງ ​​ວີໂອ​ເອ ໃນ​ຂະນະ​ທີ່​ມີ​ການປະ​ທ້ວງຢູ່ Maison de Association ​ໃນ​ນະຄອນຫລວງ​ປາຣີ ທີ່​ປະ​ເທດ​ຝຣັ່ງ ກັບ​ທ່ານ​ນາງ ບຸນ​ທອນ ຈັນທະ​ລາ​ວົງ ວິດ​ເຊີ ປະທານ​ອົງການ​ພັນທະ​ມິດເພື່ອ​ປະຊາທິປະ​​ໄຕ​ໃນລາວ​ ດັ່ງ​ຕໍ່​ລົງ​ໄປ​ນີ້:​​
ດຣ. ບຸນທອນ ຈັນທະລາວົງ ວິດເຊີ
ທ່ານ ກາດ ດິດທະ​ວົງ ຫົວໜ້າ​ອົງການ​ພັນທະ​ມິດ​ເພື່ອ​ປະຊາທິປະ​ໄຕ​ໃນ​ລາວ ສາ​ຂາປະ​ເທດ​​ອອສ​ເຕ​ຣເລຍ ກໍ​ໄດ້ກ່າວກັບວີ​ໂອ​ເອ ​ວ່າ ​“ໃນ​ວັນ​ທີ 8 ​ເດືອນ​ກຸ​ມພາ ​ຢູ່ທີ່ນະຄອນ Sydney ໄດ້ມີການປະຖະກະຖາຢູ່ Australian National Maritime Museum ໂດຍລັດຖະມົນຕີ ຕ່າງ ປະເທດ ອອສ​ເຕ​ຣ​ເລຍ ທ່ານBob Carr ​ໃນ​ຫົວ​ຂໍ້ Perpective on Human Right and

Australian Foreign Policy” ຫລື ຄວາມ​ຄິດ​ເຫັນກ່ຽວ​ກັບ​ສິດ​ທິ​ມະ​ນຸດແລະນະ​ໂຍ​ບາຍ​ການ​ ຕ່າງ​ປະ​ເທດ ຂອງອອ​ສ​ເຕຣເລຍ ຊຶ່ງທ່ານກາດ ດິດທະວົງ ພ້ອມດ້ວຍຄະນະ ກໍ​ໄດ້ເຂົ້າຮ່ວມ
ຟັງ ແລະ​ໄດ້ມອບເອກກະສານຮຽກຮ້ອງສະບັບ​ນຶ່ງ ກ່ຽວ​ກັບ​ການ​ຫາຍ​ສາບ​ສູນ​ໄປ​ຂອງ ທ່ານ​ສົມ​ບັດ ສົມ​ພອນ ໃຫ້ແກ່ທ່ານ Carrຜູ້ທີ່ຈະເດີນທາງໄປຢ້ຽມຢາມ ສປປ ລາວ ຊຶ່ງທ່ານ Carr ​ກໍ​ໄດ້​ໄປຢ້ຽມຢາມປະເທດລາວມາແລ້ວ ໃນລະຫວ່າງ​ວັນ​ທີ 17-20 ກຸມພາ ​ຜ່ານ​ມາ​ນີ້ເອງ.
ໃນ​ວັນ​ເສົາທີ 9 ກຸ​ມ​ພາ ພ້ອ​ມໆ​ດຽວ​ກັນ​ກັບການ​ປະ​ທ້ວງ​ຢູ່ປະເທດ​ຝ​ຣັ່ງນັ້ນ ຊາວລາວຢູ່ອອ​ສ​ເຕຣ​ເລຍ ກໍ​ໄດ້ພາກັນ​ ປະ​ທ້ວງ​ ຢູ່​ທີ່ Fairfield Council Hall Bonnyrigg Heightຫ່າງຈາກນະຄອນ​​ຫລວງ Canberra ປະມານ 300 ວ່າກິໂລແມດ.
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  Demonstrations for Sombath Somphone in France and Australia
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Lao Overseas TV Feb 16 2013 (1)
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Laos Could Bear Cost of Chinese Railroad
By JANE PERLEZ and BREE FENG
OUDOM XAI, Laos — Wang Quan, the new Chinese owner of a hotel in this farm town tucked into the tropical mountains of northern Laos, is hoping that the first of 20,000 Chinese workers will arrive here soon to start construction on a new railroad.
The Chinese-financed railway is to snake its way through dozens of tunnels and bridges, eventually linking southern China to Bangkok, the capital of Thailand, and then on to the Bay of Bengal in Myanmar, significantly expanding China’s already enormous trade with Southeast Asia.
But Mr. Wang may have to wait a little longer to make his fortune from all the Chinese expected to descend on this obscure corner of Laos about 50 miles from the nearest border with China. Even though the project has run into some serious objections from international development organizations, most experts expect it to go ahead anyway. That is because China considers it vital to its strategy of pulling Southeast Asia closely into its orbit and providing Beijing with another route to transport oil from the Middle East.
The crucial connection would run through Oudom Xai between Kunming, the capital of China’s southern province of Yunnan, and the Laotian capital, Vientiane.
“China wants a fast-speed rail — Kunming to Vientiane,” George Yeo, a former foreign minister of Singapore, said in a recent speech to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Business Club in Bangkok.
Mr. Yeo, chairman of Kerry Logistics Network, a major Asian freight and distribution company, is considered one of the best-informed experts on the expansion of new Asia trading routes. “The big objective is Bangkok,” he said. “It’s a huge market, lots of opportunities. From there, Bangkok to Dawei in Myanmar — that will enable China to bypass the Malacca Straits,” a potential choke point between the Indian Ocean and China’s east coast.
But China is not particularly interested in sharing much of the wealth the railroad would generate. Most of the benefits, critics say, would flow to China while most of the costs would be borne by the host nation. The price tag of the $7 billion, 260-mile rail project, which Laos will borrow from China, is nearly equal to the tiny $8 billion in annual economic activity in Laos, which lacks even a rudimentary railroad and whose rutted road system is largely a leftover from the French colonial era.
In mid-November, when Prime Minister Wen Jiabao of China visited Vientiane for a summit meeting of European and Asian leaders, he was expected to attend a groundbreaking for the railroad. The ceremony did not take place.
An assessment of the rail project by a consultant for the United Nations Development Program said the terms of the financing offered by China’s Export-Import Bank were so onerous they put Laos’s “macroeconomic stability in danger.” At the same time, construction through northern Laos would turn the countryside into “a waste dump,” the consultant’s report said. “An expensive mistake” if signed under the terms offered, the report concluded. As collateral for the loan, Laos was bound to provide China with minerals, including potash and copper.
Other international donors echoed the findings. “Partners, including the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank, expressed concern, and the International Monetary Fund was here and said, ‘You have to be very careful,’ ” said an Asian diplomat briefed on the reservations expressed to the Laotian government.
Nonetheless, the National Assembly has approved the project as part of a much broader trans-Asian rail agreement signed by nearly 20 Asian countries in 2006. While the workings of the Communist Party that runs Laos are extremely opaque, diplomats here said, the project is most strongly backed by the pro-China deputy prime minister, Somsavat Lengsavad. Efforts to interview Mr. Somsavat were unsuccessful.
China’s exploding trade with Southeast Asia reached nearly $370 billion in 2011, double that of the United States in the same year. By 2015, when the Southeast Asian countries aim to have completed an economic community, China projects that its trade with the region will equal about $500 billion.
Even as it exports a variety of goods to the region, China relies on imports from its neighbors in Southeast Asia — natural resources and intermediate goods — to fuel its export machine, said Yolanda Fernandez Lommen, principal economist for the Asian Development Bank in Beijing.
The European Community, the United States and Japan are still China’s largest trading partners, she said, but “Southeast Asia is geostrategically and economically important to China, an increasingly important partner from both the trade and investment perspectives.”
Laos offers a perfect launching pad for China’s stepped-up regional ambitions. China has poured new investments into the capital, including in dozens of luxurious villas built on the banks of the Mekong River to house the European and Asian leaders who attended the November summit meeting.
A fancy new convention hall, part of a new complex called Vientiane New World, gives a 21st-century veneer to the shabby capital. In Luang Prabang, a popular tourist destination through which the railroad will run, China has built hospitals and upgraded the airport.
Some Laotians, unhappy with the unmistakable Chinese presence, complain that their country is becoming little more than a province of China or, more slyly, a vassal state.
Veterans of the Pathet Lao, the guerrilla movement that fought alongside North Vietnam during the Vietnam War, dominate a government that keeps its distance from Washington. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton visited in July, the first visit by the United States’s top diplomat since the 1950s. The move was part of the Obama administration’s effort to forge stronger economic and military ties in the region as a counterweight to China.
In Laos, opposition to government policies is often squelched. The director of Helvetas, a Swiss development organization, was expelled on 48 hours’ notice last month, accused of an unfriendly attitude to the government. The director, Anne-Sophie Gindroz, had raised the issue of the government’s forcing peasants to sell their land at very low prices, a practice that is now seen as mainly serving the interests of Chinese-financed developers.
In Vientiane, the well-known Laotian director of a civil society group, the Participatory Development Training Center, disappeared last month after taking part in a People’s Forum where land issues were discussed on the sidelines of the November summit meeting. Diplomats said the director, Sombath Somphone, appeared to be in police custody.
Despite the sudden opposition to the Chinese railroad, a manager of a Chinese state-owned company in Vientiane, who declined to be named because he was not authorized to speak to the press, said he had every expectation that it would go ahead. He said Hu Jintao, China’s departing president, “made the decision two to three years ago.”
A foreign diplomat agreed, saying that Vientiane and Beijing would find a way to paper over their financing dispute. “The Chinese will have their way,” he said.
Here in Oudom Xai, where a Chinese language school founded by Chinese businessmen has 400 students and 28 teachers, some paid by the Chinese government, Mr. Wang, the hotel owner, expresses confidence that the project will start within the next few weeks. Since arriving in Laos three years ago, Mr. Wang said, he has also acquired a wood processing plant.
Chinese immigrants have leased about half of the agricultural land around the town, he said.
“You can rent land for however many years you have money for,” Mr. Wang said. “People here recognize money, not people.”
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/02/world/asia/china-builds-a-railroad-and-laos-bears-the-cost.html?pagewanted=1&_r=0&ref=world
Summary of the situation in Laos  

The past year in Laos has been far from business as usual. Yes, high economic growth, development megaprojects, and attendant controversies have continued apace. And, yes, there have been more major international events, notably November’s Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in Vientiane, to keep the image of an emergent Laos in the news. However, a series of unusual events – climaxing in recent weeks with the expulsion of an international NGO director and the suspected abduction of a highly respected Lao Civil Society Organization (CSO) figure – suggests the country’s continued emergence as a member of the regional and international community is being accompanied by challenges to the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party’s tight control over political discourse, a key source of its authoritarian power since 1975. Unbothered by mounting negative press coverage abroad, the response by Lao authorities to such events has been to shut down dissent through harassment, dismissal, and sanction. It is worth summarizing these events briefly. In May the director of the Academy of , Khampheuy Panmalaythong was dismissed for his 2011 comments to the National Assembly (NA), in which he questioned the relevance of Marxism-Leninism in Laos’ education system. The major surprise was not his dismissal – his remarks struck at the heart of official doctrine – but that he made the comments at all. While there is often criticism of what might be called development issues (over displacements and evictions for resource projects, official corruption, etc.), public criticism of the party, the political system, or the leadership is almost unheard of. Since his comments, Dr. Khamphuey has published an academic article in the institute’s journal questioning the relevance and effectiveness of one-party systems, implicitly a far more serious critique of the political status quo, although he did not advocate multi-party democracy for Laos. Time will tell if and how this subsequent analysis will be dealt with. In June, a group of rural farmers from southern Sekong province were arrested and jailed for their activities in opposing a Vietnam-Laos rubber plantation project, after their customary lands were seized and they were left without land for crop production, forest product collection, or livestock grazing. Earlier, in 2011, the farmers had travelled to Vientiane to submit their grievance to the National Assembly Petition Unit. The group had also been interviewed by a Lao National Radio call-in program, Talk of the News, which the Lao Government subsequently cancelled in January 2012. In the lead up to the 9 Asia-Europe Meeting Summit of Heads of State (ASEM-9) held in Vientiane from 5-6 November, an Asia-Europe People’s Forum (AEPF) was organized by Lao and regional civil society organizations in cooperation with a division of the Lao Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Laos only recently permitted the establishment of local civil society organizations – called non-profit associations (NPAs) – even if they to be closely regulated, monitored, and sometimes closely connected to the government. Whilst a relative freedom of speech was noted in the preparatory Lao provincial consultations for the AEPF, once the AEPF was underway in Vientiane it became apparent that Lao security personnel were filming individuals at the workshop and taking unwanted photographs. At least one Lao civil society member was intimidated and felt threatened in response to personal comments made by Lao officials during the forum. These issues and incidents unnerved several other sufficiently for them to withdraw from the event, and few other Lao NPA members ended up speaking at the AEPF. The tensions surrounding the AEPF suggest that, while some within the Lao government have embraced the idea of a functioning civil society, others see it as a threat to established interests, and are willing to act on this. Then, early in December, as has been widely reported, Anne-Sophie Gindroz, the director of the Swiss NGO Helvetas, was expelled after criticizing government repression of civil society in a personal letter addressed to the development partners of Laos. Gindroz wrote:
… real freedom of expression and assembly are not afforded, and those who wish to exercise their constitutional rights and dare to try, often do so at their own peril faced with intimidation, false accusations and increasingly unlawful arrest. The media are censored and, people are forbidden to hold peaceful assembly/demonstration. Even in Burma – this is no longer the case … There are serious constraints on freedom of expression. Those raising critical issues are considered as opposing the government. A climate of fear is maintained to ensure self-censorship…
The expulsion of Gindroz appears related to her activities around the AEPF meeting. Referring to the AEPF controversy, Gindroz commended those who “were brave enough to share their challenges openly”, remarking that the non-profit associations “who supported them to participate are being investigated still to this day.” Once again, what was surprising about these remarks was their rarity and forcefulness. The self-censorship to which Gindroz referred typically extends to the international community (including, it should be noted, academics). The most recent incident, widely discussed in the press and in online forums, is the December 15 disappearance of Sombath Somphone (above, source), a senior and highly respected civil society activist in Laos, while driving home in Vientiane. Compelled to respond by the circulation of security camera footage of the incident, the Lao News Agency (KPL) has released a statement suggesting Sombath was pulled over for a routine traffic check — before, apparently, being kidnapped and driven away in a separate vehicle, in the direct presence of uniformed police officers. Released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the statement speculates that a business dispute might be to blame, although most think this to be implausible. Links are instead being drawn between Sombath’s disappearance and his involvement with the controversial AEPF, particularly his support for people who made statements advocating for the rights of villagers who are suffering from the loss of their customary lands and resources. As Sombath’s wife has reiterated in public comments, government officials were also involved with the National Organizing Committee of the AEPF, so the event as a whole should not have been tainted. Sombath’s case was discussed at an event on December 21 at the Thai Foreign Correspondents Club (see hereherehere), and has been the subject of comments, letters and diplomatic statements in a number of countries. An increasing amount of speculation is directly linking Ms. Gindroz’s expulsion and Mr. Sombath’s disappearance to the AEPF controversy, the assumption being that senior party and/or security officials have launched a major crackdown against those involved with AEPF. If true, this would not bode well for Mr. Sombath or his Lao NPA colleagues.As always in Laos, a growing list of questions remains. But, more broadly, a few things stand out with respect to this series of incidents. First, it is clear that the monopoly long enjoyed by the Lao leadership over public political space is, ever so slightly and gradually, being eroded. The reasons are not hard to see. It was inevitable that, in order to pursue its trajectory of foreign investment-funded resource-based economic growth coupled with international cooperation and aid, the party-state would have to make some concessions, however limited, to the emergence of civil society. Functioning NPAs are one of the norms, however variable, of modern constitutional statehood, and until very recently all organizations within Laos were obliged to be connected to the state. In many cases NPAs may still not be independent of the state but, together with a more outspoken National Assembly, critical voices are being heard more widely than before. While many within Laos, including individuals within the government, recognize the benefits of a functioning civil society and developing the “rule of law,” more conservative (and coercive) forces would apparently like to nip this unwelcome efflorescence of independent mindedness in the bud, before it gets out of hand. The contest, it seems, is not just between the foreign/Lao civil society, on the one hand, and the Lao state on the other, but is also taking place within the Lao state. Of course, just where and between whom these political contests are happening is a far more difficult question to ponder. Second, although there is ample evidence (without drawing any concrete conclusions about Sombath’s disappearance) that disciplinary forces have so far responded in a heavy-handed fashion to dissent, there may be limits to this approach if Lao leaders wish to retain the country’s current development trajectory and its positive international reception. The government’s plan is based not only on tapping resources – natural ones domestically and financial ones internationally – but on retaining the country’s image as a good – even charming – global citizen, as exemplified by graciously hosting international events like ASEM and being a responsible regional and international partner. Somehow, despite one of the most restrictive political spaces in Asia, Laos has not typically been lumped with Myanmar or even Cambodia as a questionable partner in business or development. Yes, concerns are regularly voiced over corruption and getting the benefits of economic growth to the people, but Laos is rarely the object of international condemnation like that associated until very recently with Myanmar. To put this another way, there seems to be little doubt that newly fashionable Myanmar will “steal” a lot of Laos’s tourism industry; Laos could do without Myanmar’s international pariah status in return. At least some within the party and certainly the government will be squirming as Laos receives increasing amounts of negative international media coverage over these recent human rights cases. But, third, and most cause for concern, political leaders and security forces in Laos may care less for international image than sending an unequivocal message to the nascent civil society sector and any others that wish to publicly question state policies or their implementation. Although overt government crackdowns are uncommon in post-socialist Laos, where most policing is done from within, they are not unheard of. One thinks specifically of the imprisonment of internal party critics in the early 1990s, the disappearance of student protestors in 1999, and the disappearance/abduction of Sompawn Khanthisouk from northern Laos in 2007. In the past, such clampdowns have had the desired effect of stifling perceptions or hopes of change, however modest, and reinforcing the ever-present, but usually implicit, threat of coercive force against dissenters. If recent events form part of a systematic response by senior levels of the party leadership, it seems the bad old days, when extra-legal repression and impunity were the norm, may be back (or never quite went away). Such actions might be viewed differently today, however. Many years after local non-profit organizations began to emerge in China, Vietnam, and Cambodia, the Lao authorities, faced with the inconvenience of dealing with similar groups, seem to be employing similar methods as its post-socialist neighbors in an attempt to control and repress the new political space that, however tentatively, is emerging in Laos. If a glimmer of hope emerges from such an analysis, it is that, with farmers and activists refusing to acquiesce in the face of intimidation and repression, these countries possess far more extensive and dynamic civil society movements than the nascent one in Laos.