Fundamental Rights and Obligations of the Citizen

Article 21. Lao citizens are the persons who hold Lao nationality as prescribed by law.

Article 22. Lao citizens irrespective of their sex, social status, education, faith and ethnic groups are all equal before the law.

Article 23. Lao citizens 18 years of age and over have the right to vote and the right to be elected at the age of 21 and over except insane persons and the persons whose rights to vote and to be elected have been revoked by a court.

Article 24. Citizens of both sexes enjoy equal rights in the political, economic, cultural and social fields and family affairs.

Article 25. Lao citizens have the right to receive education.

Article 26. Lao citizens have the right to work and engage in occupations which are not against the law. Working people have the right to rest, to receive medical treatment in time of ailment to receive assistance in case of incapacity and disability, in old age, and other cases as prescribed by law.

Article 27. Lao citizens have the freedom of settlement and movement as prescribed by law. Article 28. Lao citizens have the right to lodge complaints and petitions and to propose ideas with state organisations concerned in connection with issues pertaining to the right and interests of both collectives and individuals. Complaints, petitions and ideas of citizens must be considered for solution as prescribed by law.

Article 29. The right of Lao citizens in their bodies and houses are inviolable. Lao citizens cannot be arrested or searched without warrant or approval of the authorized organisations, except in the cases as prescribed by law.

Article 30. Lao citizens have the right and freedom to believe or not to believe in religions.

Article 31. Lao citizens have the right and freedom of speech, press and assembly; and have the right to set up associations and to stage demonstrations which are not contrary to the law.

Article 32. Lao citizens have the right and freedom to conduct study and to apply advanced sciences, techniques and technologies; to create artistic and literary works and to engage in cultural activities which are not contrary to the law.

Article 33. The state protects the legitimate rights and interests of Lao citizens residing abroad.

Article 34. Lao citizens have the obligations to respect the Constitution and laws, and to observe labour discipline, the regulations in carrying out livelihood in society, and the regulations and order of the country.

Article 35. Lao citizens have the obligations to pay taxes and duties in accordance with the law.

Article 36. Lao citizens have the obligations to defend the country, to maintain the people's security and to fulfill military obligations as prescribed by law.

Article 37. The aliens and persons having no nationality have the right to enjoy their rights and freedom protected by the provisions of laws of the Lao People's Democratic Republic. They have the right to lodge petitions with courts and other organisations concerned of the Lao People's Democratic Republic and the obligations to respect the Constitution and laws of the Lao People's Democratic Republic.

Article 38. The Lao People's Democratic Republic grants asylum to foreigners who are persecuted for their struggle for freedom, justice, peace and scientific causes.