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ACHR Press Release
ACHR Index: PR/NEP/05/05/04
5 May 2004

Donors urged to recognise the Maoists conflict as a civil war

Asian Centre for Human Rights urged the Nepal Development Forum (NDF) which is holding its meeting in Kathmandu on 5-6 May 2004 to recognise the conflict with the Maoists as a civil war. “The war has affected all sections of the Nepalese society and the entire length and breath of the country. There is no difference between two lawless groups, the Royal Nepal Army and the Maoists in terms of human rights violations. While the Maoists are law unto themselves, the RNA treats the Supreme Court with contempt and even rejects show cause notices with impunity.” – stated Suhas Chakma, Director of New Delhi based Asian Centre for Human Rights.

“Unless international community recognises that Nepal is caught in a full-scale civil war, analysis of the dimensions of the Maoists crisis through narrow prism of War Against Terror in the post September 11th period or experiences of the insurgencies in South Asia is unlikely to provide solutions to the Maoists crisis. So far, arming the Royal Nepal Army has also meant arming the Maoists. A vicious circle for violence and arms market has been created in Nepal.”-  further stated Mr Chakma.

Unprecedented gross and widespread human rights violations have shattered the Nepalese society The UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and UN Working Group on Disappearances in their latest reports to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights reported maximum number of complaints from Nepal. More than 50% of the 9,500 people killed so far are extrajudicial executions perpetrated by the Maoists and the security forces.

The Asian Centre for Human Rights urged the Nepal Development Forum to:

-          urge His Majesty King of Nepal, Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev to form an all party government and hand over the control of the RNA to the civilian government;

-          take measures for resumption of dialogue between the Government of Nepal and the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoists) through international mediators in the light of the failure of the domestic mediators to make any breakthrough;

-          urge government of Nepal to ensure full compliance with the court verdicts/orders by the RNA and take prompt and appropriate actions for contempt of the court;

-          ensure that the Memorandum of Understanding between the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and Government of Nepal is signed through full and effective participation of National Human Rights Commission of Nepal;

-          provide full and unrestricted access to all the detention centers including temporary barracks, police stations to the International Committee of the Red Cross;

-          establish mechanisms for accountability including by making the entire proceedings of legal action against concerned government officials charged with human rights violations transparent by making their name, rank, designation etc public; and

-          urge the CPN (Maoist) to uphold minimum humanitarian standards applicable to the situation in Nepal, including those contained in Article 3 common to the four Geneva Conventions of 1949;

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

© Copy right 2003, Asian Centre for Human Rights, C-3/441-C, Janakpuri, New Delhi-110058, India