Following a press briefing on 21 December 2012 by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), another briefing on 21 June 2013 states it is:
…of concern that six months on there seemed to be no progress in investigating the supposed forced disappearance of Sombath Somphone, a human rights activist from the Laos People’s Democratic Republic. He disappeared as he was driving home from the capital of Vientiane on 15 December 2012. Security camera footage supposedly showed his car being stopped by police and then him being driven away by men in plain clothes. The OHCHR was concerned about his safety, as his whereabouts were unknown and no progress has been seen in identifying the suspected perpetrators. OHCHR urged the Government to intensify measures to locate him and to ensure his prompt, safe return to his family. Sombath Somphone had been recognised worldwide for his work on equitable and sustainable development. Reports suggest that his apparent abduction may be related to this.