Geneva Agreements of 1962 on Laos

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Geneva Agreements of 1962 on Laos


documents signed in Geneva, Switzerland, during an international conference (May 16, 1961-July 23, 1962) on a settlement of the Laotian question. Participating in the conference were representatives of Laos, the USSR, the People’s Republic of China, the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, Poland, the USA, France, Great Britain, India, Burma, Cambodia, Canada, Thailand and the Saigon government. Representatives of the three political forces in Laos were invited to the conference on an equal basis (Prince Souvanna Phouma from the neutralists, Prince Souphanouvong from the Patriotic Front of Laos [Neo Lao Hak Yat], and Prince Boun Oum and General Phoumi Nosavan from the rightist grouping).

In June 1962, the three Laotian political groupings reached an agreement to create a coalition government in Laos. The cochairmen of the conference were the representatives of the USSR and Great Britain. The Geneva Agreements of 1962 include the Declaration on the Neutrality of Laos, part of which is the Statement by the Government of Laos on Neutrality (July 9, 1962), and a protocol to the declaration, which provided that the conference participants would respect the sovereignty, independence, neutrality, unity, and territorial integrity of Laos.

The USA flagrantly violated the Geneva Agreements of 1962 by granting economic and military aid to the right-wing grouping in Laos in its military operations against the patriotic forces of Laos, which were launched in April 1963. The USA invaded Laotian air space beginning in 1964 and bombed territories in the liberated zone. As a result, the implementation of the internal political settlement in Laos was upset, and the coalition government ceased to operate. In February 1971, American and Saigon troops invaded southern Laos from South Vietnam, but they were thrown back by the patriotic Laotian forces. In February 1973 an agreement was signed on the restoration of peace and the reaching of a national consensus in Laos.


Vneshniaia politika Sovetskogo Soiuza i mezhdunarodnye otnosheniia, 1962: Sbornik dokumentov, Moscow, 1963. Pages 311-23.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.