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ACHR Press Release
ACHR Index: PR/NEP/01/02/04
16 February 2004

Nepal: Maoists condemned for killing rights activist

New Delhi: Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) today condemned the assassination of the Chairman of the Maoist-Victims' Association (MVA), Mr Ganesh Bahadur Chilwal, at Bagbazar, Kathmandu, Nepal yesterday i.e. 15 February 2004 by the Maoists. Two suspected Maoist cadres shot dead Mr Chilwal in front of his office. Ex-vice-chairman of the Dhamilakuwa Village Development Committee in Lamjung district, Mr Chilwal had received a death threat on 21 December 2003 from the Maoists asking him to shut down his office or else face death. On 13 February 2004, the MVA activists burnt the effigies of Maoist leaders, Pushpa Kamal Dahal and Baburam Bhattarai.

The Maoists have so far killed over 2,800 persons since the start of socalled Peoples War in 1996. The killing of Mr Chilwal in the heart of Kathmandu is clear testimony to the ruthless methods of the Maoists. The Maoists have been responsible for gross and flagrant human rights violations such as torture, kidnapping, hostage taking, extortion, killing and suppression of freedom of expression and opinion. The atrocities by the Maoists against political opponents, suspected police/military informers and alleged feudal lords have led to exodus of thousands of people from rural areas.

"The Maoists have consistently violated International Humanitarian Laws in particular common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions. By killing Mr Chilwal, the Maoists sought to silence those who critique their human rights violations and warn all human rights defenders in Nepal not to criticize the Maoists for gross human rights violations." - stated Suhas Chakma, Director of Asian Centre for Human Rights.

The Asian Centre for Human Rights called upon the government of Nepal to bring the killers of Mr Chilawal to justice.[END]

For more information please call Director of Asian Centre for Human Rights in New Delhi, India at +91-11-25503624 or 25620583

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