According to localcollegeexplorer, a reign of Laos is remembered in the 14th century; in the late 17th century. it was divided into the two kingdoms of Vientiane and Luang Prabang, the first later annexed to Siam (1827) and the second controlled by it. In 1893 Siam had to cede most of the territory of the Laos to France ; in the following decades, up to 1946, various agreements defined the borders between Laos and Siam (later Thailand). In the Second World War the country was occupied by the Japanese and in 1945 (March) King Sisavang Vong was pushed to proclaim independence. When the Japanese withdrew, an independence movement, the Lao Issarak, formed an independent government in Vientiane. In 1946 the Laos returned to the French, who repelled the Lao Issarak offensive and united the northern and southern Laos under the Luang Prabang dynasty in a single kingdom. In 1949 the Laos became autonomous within the French Union. A part of the nationalist movement, under the leadership of Prince Souphanouvong, allied himself with the Vietminh communists and gave birth to the rebel movement of the Pathet Lao, whose forces waged a guerrilla war against Luang Prabang and in 1953 invaded the Laos ensuring control of part of the territory.
For the Geneva Accords of 1954 following the defeat of Dien bien phu, France recognized the independence of Laos (admitted to the UN in 1955), which in fact remained divided into two parts, one led by the moderate prince Souvanna Phouma, the other, pro-Communist, led by Souphanouvong. The withdrawal of the French troops and the 1957 Vientiane agreement reached between the parties for a government in which the Pathet Lao also entered, did not bring political stability. The removal of Souvanna Phouma from the government (1958) and the seizure of power by a US-backed anti-communist movement led to the resumption of guerilla warfare in 1959. In 1960 Souvanna Phouma returned to power, but her efforts to keep Laos on neutralist positions in foreign policy, with the reintegration of the Pathet Lao in political life, were unsuccessful and soon there was a civil war between the right-wing forces,
At the international conference in Geneva (1962) the three factions agreed on a government of national unity with Souvanna Phouma as prime minister, signing a pact on the independence and neutrality of the Laos, which also provided for the evacuation of foreign forces. The weak equilibrium reached was broken with the assassination of the leftist foreign minister Quinin Pholsena (1963). The civil war was reignited and the growing US and North Vietnamese presence pushed Laos into the escalating conflict in Vietnam. For a decade the eastern sector of the country was subjected to massive American bombings aimed at interrupting the so-called ‘ Ho Chi Minh trail ‘, a vital route for armies and supplies from North Vietnam, and to destroy the North Vietnamese bases. While the Vientiane government was supported militarily and economically by the US, the Pathet Lao, which continued its military expansion towards the S, had the massive support of North Vietnam.
In 1971 the attempts to reach an understanding between the neutralist government and Pathet Lao failed and only after the Paris agreementsin 1973, which had established the cessation of hostilities in Vietnam, an agreement was reached between the non-communists and the left front led by Pathet Lao to give life to a government coalition. In 1974, a national unity government headed by Souvanna Phouma took office, while Souphanouvong, leader of the Pathet Lao, assumed the presidency of the National Council and foreign military forces left the country. In 1975 the right was ousted from the government and the Pathet Lao, which had extended military-political control over much of the country, took control of Vientiane. Faced with this new situation, King Savang Vatthana abdicated (1975) and the Republic was proclaimed popular democracy. With the building of the socialist state began the political re-education of the old elites who remained in the country and the mobilization of the masses around the new leaders. The first years of the new regime were characterized by a strong political exodus, especially towards Thailand, and by the activity of anti-government political-military formations also supported by the United States (in 1989 the insurrectional attempt of the United Front for national liberation failed).
In the early 1990s, the dissolution of the USSR and the lack of Soviet aid paved the way for more intense relations with Western countries. The collaboration with Australia and the United States in the control of drug trafficking and in the search for the US military missing during the Vietnam conflict resulted in the reestablishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in 1992 and subsequently (1995) in the restoration of economic aid. from Washington. On a regional level, in 1995 Laos, Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia concluded an agreement for the economic development of the Mekong basin and for the exploitation of its resources; in 1997, Laos became part of ASEAN. Central figureof the Lao political scene, having held the role of Defense Minister from 1991 to 2001 and vice-president from 2001 to 2006, in June 2006 he assumed the position of head of state C. Sayasone of the Laotian People’s Revolutionary Party, political group also predominant in the elections of April 2011, in which he won 128 of the 132 seats in the National Assembly, while Sayasone was re-elected head of state the following June, succeeding him in April 2016 by B. Vorachith. In the political consultations of February 2021, the Laotian People’s Revolutionary Party won 158 seats against 6 that went to independent lists. In February 2013, Laos joined the World Trade Organization.