The armed conflict that took place in Laos from 1959 to 1975 during the Cold War left the country with large amounts of surplus ammunition and explosive ordnance. Because of this ordnance, parts of the territory remain dangerous zones that require clearance work. Ammunition management systems also need to contribute to demilitarisation and to prevent diversion.1
The United Nations Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Asia and the Pacific (UNRCPD) and Nonviolence International are present in the country to help with the through-life management of ammunition by working with the Laotian government. Efforts have mainly focused on Physical Security and Stockpile Management (PSSM) seminars and training sessions with Laotian military and police forces on the safe and secure management of ammunition and identifying gaps in national ammunition diversion strategies.2
1“Support for Laos - Through Cluster Munitions Clearance and Risk Education.” World Without Mines. Accessed June 5, 2022. https://www.wom.ch/en/projects/laos
2GICHD-AMAT, A-MAP Database (2023)
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Since the Small Arms Survey began collecting data in 1979, one accidental explosion has been reported in Laos.
Table 1. Accidental explosions in the Lao People's Democratic Republic (1979-2021)
Source: “Unplanned Explosions at Munitions Sites (UEMS) Database,” Small Arms Survey, updated December 15, 2021, https://smallarmssurvey.org/database/unplanned-explosions-munitions-sites-uems.
Cases of diversion
Insufficient information on cases of diversion in the Lao People's Democratic Republic.
Activities in Laos are limited to demining. Insufficient information on the destruction of ammunition in the country.
Source: "Déminage Au Laos : Les Équipes Ne Lâchent Rien.” Handicap International. Accessed June 5, 2022. https://handicap-international.fr/fr/actualites/deminage-au-laos-les-equipes-ne-lachent-rien.
No needs have been reported for the Lao People's Democratic Republic.
Source: PoA Report 2020, Lao People’s Democratic Republic. https://unoda-poa.s3.amazonaws.com/reports/LAO-English-1113-SUBMITTED.pdf