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Laos

Yearbook 2001

Laos. On January 24, a bomb exploded at a border crossing between Laos and Thailand. Eleven Thai tourists were injured. Authorities said the bombing was sparked by a quarrel between two men, while independent judges were convinced that hostile rebel forces were behind it. The bombing was one in the line of similar attacks.

2001 Laos

According to Countryaah, Lao's ruling Communist Party held its seventh congress March 12-14. A few younger party members were elected to the leadership, but on most of the posts the old representatives were re-elected. President Khamtay Siphandone was re-elected chairman of the party's Central Committee. Congress decided to focus on agricultural development and preparations for modernization and industrialization.

At the end of March, the Legislative Assembly elected a new government under Prime Minister Boungnang Volachit, former Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance. The new government was reported to be a last-minute compromise solution between the party's civilian and military faction. The choice of prime minister, leader of the civilian faction, was liked by foreign lenders.

In November, a Belgian EU parliamentarian, along with four other people, were sentenced to two years in prison for participating in a demonstration for democracy in Laos. They were also expelled from the country.

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