News / Asia

Nepal Political Talks Fail to End Crisis - Again

Thousands of Maoist supporters rally in what is normally one of Kathmandu's busiest streets near the government center, 05 May 2020
Thousands of Maoist supporters rally in what is normally one of Kathmandu's busiest streets near the government center, 05 May 2020

Multimedia

An indefinite strike is to continue in Nepal with no agreement to end the Himalayan nation's political crisis. Lawmakers are supposed to formulate a new constitution in little more than three weeks. That is also the deadline to place the former Maoist combatants into the Army or reintegrate them into civil society. However, there is no movement towards completing those tasks because of the political standoff.

Nepal's top three political parties resumed meeting after a hiatus of several days and again failed to reach an accord. In a brief encounter with reporters afterwards - at which no questions were taken - the representatives of the three key parties acknowledged that while there was no breakthrough they have agreed to continue dialog in order to forge a "national consensus."

Former tourism minister Pradeep Gyawali is a central committee member of the prime minister's United Marxist Leninist Party. He tells VOA News Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal remains prepared to quit - as the Maoists demand - but not unconditionally.

Fmr. Nepal Tourism Minister Pradeep Gyawali of the United Marxist-Leninist Party, 05 May 2010
Fmr. Nepal Tourism Minister Pradeep Gyawali of the United Marxist-Leninist Party, 05 May 2010

"He's ready provided we can develop an agenda, a roadmap of the national consensus then he will definitely cooperate. He will not be the obstacle. He will resign," he said.

As promised, the Maoists increased the pressure on the streets of the capital, during the fourth day of an indefinite nationwide strike that has paralyzed commerce.

Thousands of cadres and their supporters surrounded the Singha Durbar, where the prime minister's office and most ministries are located. Riot police blocked key intersections to prevent protesters from getting too close to the key government complex.

So far, Nepal's Army remains out of sight. But they are making their presence known, subtle it may be.

Several hundred meters from the potential flash point between the riot police and demonstrators, the soldiers marched to the tune of bagpipers inside their walled camp on the grounds of the Singha Durbar.

Political analysts say deploying the Army would come only in the most desperate of circumstances. If they were to confront the demonstrators the Maoists are nearly certain to release the former guerillas from U.N.-supervised camps, plunging the country back into civil war.

Steve Herman's video report


U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is urging the government and political parties to remove all impediments to agreement, noting that failure to meet the May 28 deadline for a new constitution would work in favor of those who oppose the aims of the 2006 peace agreement. In a report to the Security Council, Mr. Ban also calls for extending the mandate of the U.N. Mission in Nepal beyond its May 15 deadline.

Meanwhile, UNICEF and the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights in Nepal, in a joint statement, are expressing concern about the use of children in the Maoist's street demonstrations. The organizations say this "places them at risk of violence and exposes them to potentially dangerous situations."

You May Like

Ukraine Purges Interior Ministry Leadership With Pro-Russian Ties

Interior Minister Avakov says 91 people 'in positions of leadership' have been fired, including 8 generals found to have links to past pro-Moscow governments More

US Airlines Point to Additional Problems of any Ebola Travel Ban

Airline officials note that even under travel ban, they may not be able to determine where passenger set out from, as there are no direct flights from Liberia, Guinea or Sierra Leone More

Nigerian President to Seek Another Term

Goodluck Jonathan has faced intense criticism for failing to stop Boko Haram militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid