Laos' spokesman says his government fully supports China's handling of the situation in Tibet and denounces the protests there as illegitimate and an act of rioting by the so-called "bad elements" who want to link politics to the upcoming Summer Olympics in Beijing.
In the first reaction by the Lao government to the unrest in Tibet, Ministry of Foreign Affairs' spokesperson Yong chanthalangsy says China has acted legitimately in taking all the necessary measures to bring the situation in Tibet under control and restore peace and order to the society.
His statement is based on the one-China policy long held by Laos. The government in Vientiane has recently denounced Taiwan's bid to hold a referendum on independence from China as counter-productive to the security and stability of the East Asian region.
China has been a major aid donor to Laos for the past ten years with grants totalling more than 2,300 millon yuans to fund over 60 development projects, and that excludes over 300 million dollars in low- interest loans.
During Laotian Prime Minister Bouasone Bouphavanh's visit to Beijing in August 2007, China agreed to provide its southern neighbor more than 512 million yuans in grants and low-interest loans. Chinese companies are also building a sports complex for Laos to host the 25th SEA Games in 2009 in exchange for a 50-year concession on the That Luang marshland where China has been given permission to build a new residential and shopping areas. China is also building a new television station in Vientiane for Laos to use to broadcast the SEA Games events.
China, now number-two foreign investor in Laos, is expected to surpass number-one Thailand by year's end, and its overall current investment values of more than 1,100 million dollars are expected to top 3 billion dollars by 2010.
Listen to our report for more details in Lao.