A high ranking Lao official says his government will search for the 27 missing Hmongs that Thai authorities secretly sent back to Laos late last year. Laos claims it knew nothing of the repatriation and does not know the whereabouts of those Hmongs.
The missing Hmongs were parts of some 6,000 Hmongs living along the road leading to Ban Huay Namkhao in Khao Kho district in Thailand's Phetchaboun province. They were arrested when they ventured out of their community on an outing in December 2005. Thai police charged them with illegal entry and secretly sent them back to Laos.