January 25, 2016: Rare terrorist bombing in Laos

On January 25, 2016 two Chinese nationals were killed and one wounded in a suspected bomb blast in Laos.

XAYSOMBOUN PROVINCE, LAOS – That terrorism can occur anywhere is a given but that does not mean it does not still surprise us on occasion.

How are you at geography? Can you find your way around a map? If you read the news and an unfamiliar place pops up how fast can you figure out where it is?

I always liked maps and geography in school. Those really old maps made by the early (largely European) explorers are quaint today perhaps but do show just how much we knew – and didn’t know – about the world until relatively late in our development as a species.

There be dragons…we think! (Photo: Public Domain)

Still, there are lands that would elicit a ‘Um, where is that?’ from most people most times. Laos may be one such place. Located in Southeast Asia – between the better known Thailand and Vietnam – it is a nation of some 7 million and is the only landlocked country in the region. It is generally not all that much in the news, and that goes for terrorism.


On this day in 2016

Two Chinese nationals were killed and one wounded in a suspected bomb blast while traveling in a vehicle on the mountain roads of Laos’ Xaysomboun province. That region has been plagued by sporadic conflict between the government and ethnic Hmong militants for years and Chinese workers have increasingly come under attack as the country‚Äôs firms expand operations abroad, often in politically unstable places.

Laos military personnel rushed to the scene and the injured, surnamed Zhou, has been shifted to a hospital in the capital, Vientiane, for treatment.

Xinhua news agency

Laos. Terrorism. Go figure. It just goes to show that this scourge knows no boundaries.

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By Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. Phil is a 32-year veteran of CSE and CSIS and the author of six books on terrorism.

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