News today that Laos is attempting to join the International Whaling Commission is getting coverage all over the world. According to the Associated Press report:

The landlocked nation of Laos has agreed to join the International Whaling Commission at Japan’s request and is highly likely to support Tokyo’s high-profile pro-whaling campaign, Japanese officials said Wednesday.

Japan is on a diplomatic drive to win support for its bid to overturn a moratorium on commercial whaling, but it was unclear if Laos could complete membership in time for the next commission meeting May 28-31 in Anchorage, Alaska.

Laotian Prime Minister Bouasone Bouphavanh made the pledge Monday during talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who afterward announced new development aid of $1 million to Laos for the removal of buried unexploded bombs.