Knaller an der Zeitungsfront

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Nepal's Maoists in government (The Guardian)

Nepal's Maoists in government after deal ends 10-year war
Tania Branigan, and agencies
Monday April 2, 2007
The Guardian

Nepal's former Maoist guerrillas joined an interim government yesterday under a peace deal that finally takes them into the political mainstream after a decade-long conflict.
Six former insurgents took nationally televised oaths of office to become top government officials, having signed a peace deal in November with the multi-party government, ending an anti-monarchist revolt that killed more than 13,000 people.
Five former Maoists were appointed ministers, while a sixth was given a junior minister portfolio, alongside 16 other ministers and junior ministers.

The top Maoist leader, Pushpa Kamal Dahal, who goes by the name Prachanda, said the main focus now would be to prepare for June elections for a special assembly that will rewrite the constitution and decide whether Nepal will continue as a constitutional monarchy.
"This day marks the beginning of a new Nepal. Our priority for now is to hold the elections, which will be free and fair," said Prachanda.

Britain and the European Union hailed the development as an important milestone. Gareth Thomas, the development minister, will announce a £36.5m package to support the peace process as he meets Maoist leaders in Nepal today - with much of the money going directly into measures to boost democracy and civil society. The Department for International Development is also increasing its aid from £37m in 2006/7 to £43m in 2007/8.

"The formation of the interim government is a step down the path of lasting peace," said Mr Thomas, who will discuss the interim administration's work towards elections in June.
Britain is the first donor to the new peace trust fund. It will hand over £2.3m, topped up with £2.3m in debt relief. Nepal will receive a further £8.5m for the fund if it makes the progress it has promised, and £23.5m in debt relief between 2008 and 2015.

The fund will monitor the progress of the peace agreement, support the elections, strengthen human rights monitoring and boost law and order by retraining the police and providing crucial equipment. It will also help former soldiers - including children - to return to normal life and work and assist the 40,000 people who fled the conflict to return home.


Post a Comment

<< Home