Will Nepal coup play into the hands of Maoist rebels?

Reply Fri 18 Feb, 2005 01:33 pm
Well, I suppose the way I phrased the question already indicates how I look at it. King Gyanendra's coup d'etat and the subsequent persecution of the democratic opposition leaves the fight in the country as one between the king's newly confirmed dictatorship and the violent Maoist guerrilla's. The center - civil society groups, opposition parties, independent NGO's - all that would have provided the breeding ground for a resilient democracy - is now the first to be clamped down on. Which leaves just a totalitarian regime in the capital city to face the at least as unscrupulous rebels. How's that gonna help?

Thats my instinctive take on it - but I'm no Nepal expert. So I was curious how other people look at this issue and whether people know of particularly interesting takes or reports on the situation.
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Reply Fri 18 Feb, 2005 05:21 pm
It is fascinating indeed, Nimh.

I will go and look up some trusty places for an analysis.

It is a sad time, indeed, for nepal. Especially if the tourism dollar is affected.
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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 01:11 am
Hmmm - can't access my damn Foreign Affairs online subscription from this damn compouter - and my other sources are dry, so far.

But - this came through on my Amnesty International action line:

February 10, 2005

"Dear Deb,

We need your help right now.

Krishna Pahadi, the founding chairman of the Human Rights and Peace Society (HURPES), was arrested at the organization's office in Nepal's capital, Kathmandu, on February 9. Krishna Pahadi, the former president of Amnesty International's Nepal section, is well known as one of the country's leading human rights defenders. His whereabouts are unknown and there are serious concerns for his safety."

NOT looking good.....

And - with him turning it into a police state - and arresting moderate opponents - well, I think you are right - this can only play into the hands of his more extreme opposition.

LA Times:



Nepal a police state: Nepali Cong

Saturday, February 19, 2005 (Kathmandu):

Nepal under emergency rule has the face of a police state and the king's forces are hounding politicians and potential opponents, not Maoist militants, opposition leaders said today.

But the military denied the allegations and said the army was functioning under the civilian council of ministers, and had no more power than before the king seized control of the government on February 1.

"Anybody can be branded a terrorist now ... in the name of security. Every normal activity is under the control of the security forces - the army and the police," Ram Saran Mahat, a top leader of the Nepali Congress, the country's largest party said.

Counter view

King Gyanendra said he took power because he needed the authority to combat guerrillas who have fought since 1996 to replace the constitutional monarchy with a communist regime. He has also blamed politicians for being corrupt and inefficient, pushing the country into a "morass."

Mahat said he accepted the king's assertion that Nepal's politicians had been squabbling for power and had governance problems, but said a state of emergency was not the answer.

"There were mistakes ... but you have to play the game by the rules. If politicians are bad, they can be thrown out by the people," he said.

Mahat, who has worked as a senior cabinet minister under three prime ministers, is the most senior opposition politician working openly in Nepal. (AP)

More from Amnesty - seems he is destroying the middle - who are also being hurt by the maoists:

"Amnesty slams Nepal situation

Rajesh K Sundaram

Thursday, February 17, 2005 (New Delhi):

Human rights watchdog Amnesty International has called the ongoing Nepal situation a "human rights catastrophe waiting to happen".

In a report, the human rights body has said journalists, lawyers, politicians, political and human rights activists are living under constant threat and distress in the country.

Amnesty International has also appealed to all countries to suspend military aid to Nepal.

"We call on the international community to restore pressure on the government in Nepal to restore fundamental rights to the people and protect defenders of human rights who have been subject to restrictions," said Irene Zubaida Khan, Secretary general, Amnesty international.

Double threat

Amnesty reports that human rights of ordinary citizens are threatened by the Maoists as well. Young boys at an orphanage in Nepalgunj told Amnesty International that they were forced by the Maoists to carry bombs for them.

Meanwhile, journalists say they continue to be subject to strict censorship by the news regime.

"Most newspapers have missing columns that have been hacked by the censors, and journalists have an unwritten code on what they can report on and what they cannot. The enforcement is complete," said senior journalist Yubaraj Ghimirey.

Military help

Left parties in India say ending military aid to Nepal will intensify the pressure on the King. The sentiment is echoed by Nepalese political exiles in Delhi.

"They are using the army to crush the non-violent political protests. India would do the cause of democracy a great deal of good if they suspend military aid to Nepal immediately," said Nepali Congress leader Shekhar Koirala.

It's been nearly a month since the democratically elected government of Sher Bahadur Deuba was dissolved, and international condemnation was immediate with many countries, including India, recalling their ambassadors from Kathmandu.

It's now clear the world is waiting for an early sign that Nepal is ready to continue with its experiment with democracy."

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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 11:35 am
On the front page today, big picture of cops arresting demonstrators in Kathmandu who were protesting against the king on the Day of Democracy. Says also that the king, for the second time, had all telephone connections cut in the country
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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 12:03 pm
Thanks for the info, dlowan.

This was in the paper yesterday (translated from Trouw):

Amnesty wants stop to military aid

Nepal is on the brink of a catastrophe, Amnesty International concludes after a visit of its secretary-general Irene Khan to the country. Because of the fights between the army and the Maoists there were already regularly human rights abuses in the countryside, but after the coup d'etat and the declaration of a state of emergency the situation is also escalating in the cities.

Amnesty regularly expresses its concern over the army, which is responsible for the highest number of disappearances in the world. [..] Torture and executions of prisoners without trial is widespread. The conflict between maoist rebels and the state thus far cost the lives of 111,000 people.

Amnesty yesterday called upon donor countries to suspend military aid to Nepal, because king Gyanendra threatens to "destroy" the human rights. [..]

As well as this:

Activists into hiding after royal coup

Human rights activists in Nepal lead a nomadic life since the king took over power on February 1. Some fled to India, others sleep in a different place every night to avoid being arrested.

[Gopal] Siwakoti is secretary of the human rights organisation Inhured. After the royal coup, he moved in temporarily with a Dutch family in Kathmandu - just like other activists and journalists he prefers to sleep in foreigners' houses, because that's the safest. In the morning they travel by cab, baseball-cap pulled over their ears, to the UN building, where they are protected. [..]

Siwakoti's nomadic existence started within hours of the king having taken over government, when police in civilian clothes visited his house. His organisation opened a helpline half a year ago where people could file complaints and released prisoners could get help so they wouldnt be picked up again immediately. The security troops were not happy with that.

"I am old enough to remember the repressive panchayat regime of the eighties, and had packed my backpack already during the royal proclamation", says Siwakoti. "The army won't immediately kill me but can make life sour for me. Now that the freedom of ownership has been suspended they can buy up my house for a song." [..]

Sushil Pyakurel, Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission, looks tired. He too went into hiding after the coup, and only returned back home once the telephone worked again. The secretary gets annoyed when he is asked why the majority of the Kathmandu inhabitants seem to be in favour of the coup. "What would you say if Saddam Hussein had asked you in Iraq whether you were for or against him?" [..]

Pyakurel's name is on a list of prominent activists circulating among security troops. He is one of the many activists who "for his own safety" is not allowed to leave the Kathmandu Valley and whose phone is bugged. He also gets no permission to visit deposed political leaders or prisons. [..]

The secretary is especially worried about his staff outside the capital. They are under strong pressure of both representatives of the army and Maoist rebels. "Our informants are between a rock and a hard place; whatever they say, one of the parties will feel attacked and take harsh measures." [..]

Pyakurel feels reasonably safe now but is not sure it will remain so. "If even the Prime Minister can be arrested, who is still safe in Nepal?" [..]
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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 12:06 pm

Reading with interest (and dismay.)
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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 12:18 pm
BM- Me too.
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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 06:10 pm
The Royal family are, it seems, the oddest folk - what with the palace shoot-up a while ago and all...

And MAOist guerillas? Here and now?
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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 06:40 pm
I know, huh.

Well, hey, our largest growing leftwing party here is formerly Maoist ... still, not quite the same thing.

You got 'em in Peru too tho, dontcha - Maoist guerrillas I mean? Sendero Luminoso? Or did Fujimoro finish those off for good (the one good thing he would have achieved)?

So - the current king shot his brother or had him shot to get to the throne, or how was that? Positively Shakespearian, that.

Intriguing country.
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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 06:47 pm
nimh wrote:
You got 'em in Peru too tho, dontcha - Maoist guerrillas I mean? Sendero Luminoso? Or did Fujimoro finish those off for good (the one good thing he would have achieved)?

Yep, those in Peru are still alive too: 2002 report: Shining Path Reemerges in Peru, Maoist Guerrillas Profit from Prohibition in the Andes
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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 07:05 pm

The Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) or CPN(M) is a Maoist political party and military organisation founded in 1994 and led by 'Chairman Prachanda' (born Pushpa Kamal Dahal). It launched the Nepalese People's War on February 13, 1996, and now controls much of the country. Its main goal is to overthrow the monarchy and replace it with a Communist-style republic. They follow the Maoist strategy of people's war in which they attempt to take gradual control of the countryside to encircle the cities, only fighting with government forces on their own terms when they can significantly outnumber their enemy.

It has been alleged, because the CPN(M) have said that they do not accept the orthodox version of what happened in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, that they are another Khmer Rouge in the making.

See also the item on the Nepalese People's War, but please remark that the description (which is noted to "need additional contributors badly") describes only the King's regime vs. the Maoist rebels, ignoring the role of the vibrant enough democratic opposition completely:

Under the aegis of the global War on Terrorism and with the stated goal of averting the development of a "failed state" that could serve as a source of regional and international instability, the United States and India, among other nations, have begun providing extensive military and economic aid to the Nepalese government. In response, the Maoist leaders have denounced U.S. involvement and threatened to target U.S. interests.

Nepal is currently one of the few absolute monarchies left on the planet. The king may dissolve parliament at will and frequently has done so. The government has responded to the People's War by banning "provocative" statements about the monarchy, imprisoning journalists, and shutting down newspapers alleged to take the side of the insurgents.

Do check the rather crappy website of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), for freak value. They control half the country, but cant maintain a website. Note the 404 link to the Peopels Radio (sic) and the link to their paper The Worker, which is, eh, I mean was hosted on their cpnmaoist.org site - which ironically has been bought up by one of those commercial Internet pirates, resulting in the unintentionally (tragi)comical slogan "cpnmaoist.org - What you need, when you need it".

<doubting between Razz and Shocked again>
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Reply Sat 19 Feb, 2005 07:47 pm
Joins in the Shocked (website)

Aside comment: How long will we continue this idiotic practice of prohibition? Rolling Eyes(Check it out; I'm blaming America first. :wink: )
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Reply Mon 21 Feb, 2005 03:26 am
Damn - I was just comng in with Wikipedia info - of course Nimh has it first!

Interesting that they need research - am gonna hafta donate to them as soon as I can, they are a great resource.

Encyclopaedia Britannica has nothing recent - sigh.

If only I could get into Foreign Affairs.

Checking Atlantic Monthly - with little hope.

Aaah! The BBC comes through with some good info:


A source for ongoing news re Nepal:


And - according to the Beebs - the king's actions have, indeed, hardened the Maoist's line:

On Sunday, the king made his first public appearance since the coup, driving to a spring ceremony at a palace in central Kathmandu, but he made no comments on the takeover.

Before his move, the Maoists had softened their original insistence on a republic, saying their main demand was for elections to an assembly to draw up a new constitution

But Maoist spokesman, Krishna Bahadur Muhara, has now told the BBC the rebels' demands for an assembly, an interim government and a round table conference were being refocused.

Both he and the Maoists' top leader, Prachanda, said there was no place for immediate talks with the authorities.

However, the BBC's Charles Haviland in Kathmandu says that appears to leave the door open for negotiations at some future point.....

Timeline on crisis:

June 2001 - Gyanendra is crowned king following royal massacre
July 2001 - Sher Bahadur Deuba becomes prime minister following Maoist violence
Oct 2002 - King Gyanendra sacks Deuba and assumes executive power
June 2004 - Deuba reappointed prime minister in place of Surya Bahadur Thapa
Feb 2005 - Deuba sacked, king assumes direct power

Beeb's Question and Answer on Nepal situation:

Q&A: Nepal crisis
King Gyanendra of Nepal has declared a state of emergency after sacking his government and assuming direct powers. The move comes after a long period of political turmoil and amid a bloody campaign by Maoist rebels. The BBC News website looks at the background to the crisis.

Why has the king sacked his government now?

He accuses Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba's government of failing to win the support of Maoist rebels for a 13 January deadline for peace talks and failing to prepare the ground for elections in the spring.

However, analysts suggest the king may be using these issues to strengthen his own role in Nepalese politics, perhaps seeking to create an absolute monarchy.

Supporters of an absolute monarchy in Nepal argue that if the United States can back Gen Pervez Musharraf in Pakistan in its war on terror, why should King Gyanendra not be allowed to conduct the war against the Maoists?

Are we talking about a coup?

One government minister, Bimalendra Niddhi, said Nepal was in a "state of coup against democratic practices".

The king denies carrying out a coup. He insists that human rights will be respected and promises "effective democracy" and peace within three years.

In the capital, Kathmandu, phones lines were cut, the airport shut and armed vehicles sent out on patrol.

Soldiers have been posted outside the homes of senior members of the ousted government.

What has the reaction been at home and abroad?

Prime Minister Deuba, placed under house arrest, said he would oppose the dissolution of his government. He said the "anti-democratic step" had thrown Nepal into a "grave crisis".

India, Nepal's giant neighbour, voiced "grave concern", accusing the king of violating the constitution. The foreign ministry suggested the move played into the hands of the Maoist rebels seeking to both "undermine democracy and the institution of monarchy".

How bad has the fighting in the civil war been?

There has been heavy violence since Maoist rebels pulled out of a seven-month truce in late August 2003.

In parts of the country fighting between the two sides has been worse than ever, with both sides accused of carrying out human rights abuses.

Despite several rounds of talks over the last three years, the two sides still fail to agree on the central issue - the role of Nepal's constitutional monarchy.

The Maoists want a special committee to be set up to draft a new constitution for the country, which would offer the option of abolishing the monarchy.

The government's room for negotiation was restricted by the king's decision to assume executive powers and dismiss successive prime ministers he appointed after parliament was suspended in October 2002.

Will either side emerge victorious?

Analysts say that as the war has progressed, it has become increasingly clear that neither side has the military muscle to win the war decisively.

The rebel blockade of Kathmandu in 2004 illustrated this point. For a few days in August the city was cut off by the rebels, but they were either unable or unwilling to maintain their stranglehold.

The Maoists continue to remain strong in remote areas - especially in the west - but the government remains in control in Kathmandu and Pokhara.

In November 2004, the rebels rejected a two-month deadline set by the government to begin peace talks.

The Maoists' leader, Prachanda, said he was keen to enter into talks but feared the government's move was a conspiracy.

Analysts say there is little hope of the key sticking point of the monarchy being resolved in the near future.

How long has the conflict been going on?

The Maoist leaders took their communist faction underground in 1996 after winning only nine of the 205 seats in parliament in earlier elections.

Within months, leaders had created a highly organised insurgency.

More than 10,000 people are estimated to have died since 1996 - over half of them since the army joined the fight in late 2001.

Attempts at peace talks in August of that year stalled after three rounds of negotiations - again over the question of the monarchy.

The Maoists walked out of the negotiations and in November, broke the ceasefire and resumed attacks on government troops.

A state of emergency, which lasted for 10 months, was imposed and the army was ordered to fight the rebels for the first time.

What do we know about the rebels?

Very little is reliably known about the Maoists, eight years into what they call their "people's war".

They claim to be inspired by Chinese revolutionary leader Mao Zedong and want to establish a communist state.

Their shadowy leader's name, Prachanda, is translated as "the fierce one".

The group is modelled after Peru's Maoist Shining Path guerrillas.

Senior military officers say there are between 10,000 and 15,000 well-trained Maoist fighters, known as the movement's "hard core".

It is estimated that there could be up to 50,000 so called "militia" who fight alongside them.

How strong are the rebels?

Some analysts say that the rebels now control roughly 40% of Nepalese territory, but this figure is disputed by the government.

The Royal Nepalese army is better equipped than the rebels and is receiving increased help from the US.

But mountainous terrain favours the rebels who also can rely on popular support in some areas. Recently however there have been reports that war weary villagers in remote parts have begun to question the Maoist campaign.

The rebels continue to call frequent general strikes, with allegations that in Kathmandu they are only observed because many people fear reprisals if they do not take part.

The strikes usually result in the temporary closure of businesses, and normal life coming to a standstill. The deserted city streets showed the revolutionaries still have the power to paralyse the economy.
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Walter Hinteler
Reply Mon 21 Feb, 2005 03:41 am
I'm glad, this gets some interest now.

Some more (older) information:

Nepal leaders demand restoration of democracy in Kingdom

New Delhi, Feb 19 (UNI) Several Nepalese political parties today demanded the immediate restoration of democracy and the removal of King Gyanendra's ''autocratic regime which had hindered the progress of Nepal''.

Protesting the February 1 imposition of Emergency by the king who dismissed the democratically elected government, Mr Chitra Bahadur K C of Nepal Communist Party-MASAL said at a rally at Jantar Mantar: ''It is the monarchy which has kept development away from Nepal. The kings have always promoted the panchayati raj which has only hindered progress in our nation.

'' Now again King Gyanendra is saying he imposed emergency for the people of the country but anyone can see that they are not happy. '' Addressing the 1,500 strong crowd, Mr Shekhar Koirala of the Nepali Congress said: ''We will fight for the end of this autocratic regime which is not acceptable to the people of Nepal who have lost every fundamental right. People are being oppressed by this regime which has arrested thousands of political activists and even journalists are not being spared.

''This muzzling of the press cannot go on for long. We will agitate everywhere relentlessly for the restoration of peace in our country.'' He requested Nepalese people the world over to unite on this day, celebrated as ''Democracy day'' in the himalayan kingdom, and express their solidarity in this fight for fundamental rights.

Later, talking to UNI, he said all the six major political parties who have recently formed an alliance are unanimous that democracy has to be restored.

''Only if a constituent assembly is formed can the sovereignity of the people be restored. The only question in front of us now is who will call for this constituent assembly and what will the role of the king be in the new set up.

''At present there exists no constitution in Nepal, King Gyanendra has murdered whatever existed before. This is why the constituent assembly must be formed, in a free and fair atmosphere, which can then decide whether we will have a republic or a proper constitutional monarchy.

By Constitutional monarchy I mean one is which the military and the police are not under the king but under the parliament. We might even have to dismantle the Royal Nepal army like it was done in Iraq,'' he said.

About mass desertions from the military, Mr Koirala said: ''I know that the lower ranks are fleeing as they too want democracy.

The common man in the country is suffering today and this has to end.'' About the Maoists he said: ''Even they know that they cannot do anything on their own and for us to join forces some preconditions exist. They will have to shun violence and guns as we are for only non-violent methods. We have already begun peaceful demonstrations in Kathmandu and other areas and about 200 people were arrested yesterday.'' Mr Pradeep Giri of the Nepali Congress (Democratic) said the international community, especially India, needs to support this movement and for this all military aid should be stopped at once.

''India's support is vital for us,'' he said.

The three main Nepalese outfits, based in India, which took part in the protest include the Pravasi Nepali Sangh, Nepali Jan Sampark Samiti and the All India Nepali Ekta Samaj.
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Reply Mon 21 Feb, 2005 05:46 am
Beebs on Who Are the Rebels:


A few excerpts:

"So how did the rebels transform themselves from a small group of shotgun-wielding insurgents in 1996 to the formidable fighting force they are today?

The disillusionment of the Maoists with the Nepalese political system began after democracy was re-introduced in 1990.

Shining Path

Many who are key figures in the rebel movement today played a role alongside mainstream political parties in over-throwing Nepal's absolute monarchy.

Although they participated in the country's first parliamentary elections, their disenchantment with ceaseless political squabbling - and their anger at the plight of the rural poor - prompted them to take up arms.

In doing so, there is little doubt that the two key rebel leaders, Prachanda and Baburam Bhattarai, derived their inspiration from Peru's Shining Path rebels.

The Maoists military strength has increased considerably in recent years

Both men wanted to emulate the Shining Path's stated objective of destroying government institutions and replacing them with a revolutionary peasant regime.

As with the Shining Path, Nepal's Maoists deal with dissent ruthlessly. Human rights groups say that like the security forces, they are guilty of numerous summary executions and cases of torture.

The Nepalese Maoists have also made some "homegrown" modifications to Maoist ideology.......

The Maoists say that the reason they have so much support is because most of their supporters have traditionally been treated as second-class citizens or worse.

Many analysts that this is the real explanation as to why such a seemingly anachronistic movement has made such dramatic headway.

The rebels can now threaten Kathmandu itself

Unquestionably there is a substantial number of people in Nepal who see the Maoists as the only genuine alternative to the old, repressive social order.

The first Maoist attack is believed to have taken place in 1996, when six government and police outposts were attacked simultaneously in mid-western Nepal. Similar attacks took place on a regular basis in the same area over the next few years.

Initially the rebels were not taken seriously at all by the government, diplomats, journalists or the all-pervasive aid agencies that dominate Nepal's economy. They were lightly armed and not considered a genuine military threat......."

Now they are.
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Reply Mon 21 Feb, 2005 04:33 pm
Two other things that struck me from that same article (thanks dlowan):

Only a few weeks ago, the rebels abducted hundreds of school children for a week long "re-education" course on Maoist ideology right under the noses of the security forces on the outskirts of Kathmandu.

Strong emotional reaction to that. People who do that can not EVER be allowed to take over power. The alarm bells rinkling arent the usual ones of wanton cruelty - its that, but combined with worse - insane zealotry. Pol Pot, is the association.

And this presents a more rational mindfu!k:

As one analyst put it, the government appears to be caught in a classic catch-22 situation.

Until there is substantial social and economic development in the areas of the countryside where the Maoists hold sway, the insurgency will continue.

But development cannot happen until the government gains even limited access to these areas, and access can only be achieved by using highly unpopular and potentially counterproductive military means against a well-organised guerrilla army.
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Reply Mon 21 Feb, 2005 05:47 pm
"Only a few weeks ago, the rebels abducted hundreds of school children for a week long "re-education" course on Maoist ideology right under the noses of the security forces on the outskirts of Kathmandu. "

Yep - chilling reminders of the "Cultural Revolution".

Absolutely horrible.
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Walter Hinteler
Reply Fri 25 Feb, 2005 01:18 pm
The Nepalese government will be regulating in-country human rights groups such as Amnesty International-Nepal and the International Committee of the Red Cross, according to a senior government official quoted in Friday's Nepalese newspapers. The source said that the current government is displeased with the portrayal of Nepal's human rights record in the international community and is therefore going to regulate the conduct of the groups. The report comes on the same day that the government released nine high-profile detainees to the district court in Kathmandu, including Bishnu Nisthuri, the general secretary of the Federation of Nepalese Journalists.
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Walter Hinteler
Reply Fri 25 Feb, 2005 01:19 pm
Govt to regulate HR groups

KOL Report

KATHMANDU, Feb 25 - The government is preparing to regulate human rights organizations including Amnesty International-Nepal (AI-N) and International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), news reports Friday said.
The current government is disappointed with the exposure of the country's human rights situation in the international fora, according to a highly placed government source.

"In international forums, Nepal has been portrayed as a country with poor human rights record," the source said, adding, "So the government wants to check these organizations."

Meanwhile, travel restrictions imposed by the government has troubled people from various walks of life.

Dr. Om Gurung, professor at the Tribhuvan University and Former Supreme Court Justice Laxman Aryal were stopped at the Tribhuvan International Airport in the eleventh hour while trying to board a flight to attend separate programs.

So far, about a dozen people who are under government's travel restriction list have already returned from the airport in the past few days. (dds)
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Walter Hinteler
Reply Fri 25 Feb, 2005 01:19 pm
Nisthuri, Nepal and Baral released

KOL Report

KATHMANDU, Feb 25 - The government on Friday released nine high-profile detainees. Bishnu Nisthuri, general secretary of Federation of Nepalese Journalists, Homanth Dahal, a Cabinet minister in the Deuba government, CPN-UML leader Pradip Nepal and Asta Laxmi Shakya, CPN-ML leader C.P.Mainali, NC leader Nona Koirala, Professor Lokraj Baral and Khagendra Bhattarai, former president of Nepal Lecturers Association and Shiva Bahadur Basnet were brought to the district administration office in Kathmandu and released in the supervision of district court officials, according to our correspondent Kedar Ojha.
Upon being released Nisthuri said, "This is a positive move and it seems that the government has understood the importance of press."

"I would also like to thank national and international organizations who stood behind us during the period and created pressure for our release," Nisthuri told Kantipur Online.

Nisthuri hoped that all the other detainees too would be released soon. (hb/ dds)
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