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Nepal - Kofi Annan er stærkt bekymret over udviklingen i Nepal!

NEPAL: UN Secretary-General dismayed over recent events

IRINnews.org, 20. januar 2006

FN's generalsekretær Kofi Annan har udtalt stærk bekymring efter at Nepals illigitime regering har arresteret mindst 120 toppolitikere og menneskerettighedsforkæmpere. Kofi Annan opfordrer på det stærkeste Kong Gyanendras regering til at indlede en dialog med såvel de politiske partier som med maoisterne for at forsøge at afsluttet den konflikt, der nu gennem 10 år har kostet mere end 12.000 mennesker livet.

KATHMANDU, 20 Jan 2006 (IRIN) - UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has expressed concern over recent developments in Nepal where, on the eve of a major demonstration planned for Friday in the capital, Kathmandu, the government has arrested a large number of political party leaders and other critics.

Ian Martin, the Representative of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Nepal, had raised the matter with the government and OHCHR officers had visited 97 of the more than 120 persons reportedly now in detention, a statement released out of New York said on Thursday.

Annan has repeatedly called for urgent dialogue in order to avoid confrontation, as well as for a bilateral ceasefire between the Nepalese government and the Maoist rebels, who have been waging a 10 year war against the royalist government since 1996 that has already taken the lives of over 12,000.

But that appeal has gone unheeded and a four-month unilateral ceasefire declared by the Maoists has come to an end, prompting the UN chief to again appeal for calm, the suspension of fighting and the urgent initiation of an inclusive national dialogue between the two sides, the statement added.

Annan is not alone in his concern for the Himalayan kingdom, however, and attempts by the government to foil Friday's protests in Kathmandu underscore that, where police have already imposed a dawn to dusk curfew in the city.

Nepali authorities had reportedly asked the opposition to call off Friday's rally, claiming that they had information that Maoist rebels were planning to infiltrate it and incite violence - something the rebels have denied.

In its recently published 2006 global report, Human Rights Watch (HRW) criticised both state authorities and the Maoist rebels for they see as an increase in human rights and humanitarian problems in the country.

According to the report, the situation took a turn for the worse after constitutional King Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah siezed direct rule over the government on 1 February; sacking former prime minister Sher Bahadur Deuba and assuming all executive powers.

Over 3,000 politicians, rights activists, student activists, democratic intellectuals and journalists were arrested in the following few months.

"The royalist government has further clamped down on civil and political rights. The government prevents political parties and trade and student unions from operating freely, the media is restricted and individuals have almost no recourse to the law," the report asserted.

Moreover, extrajudicial killings, illegal detentions, and disappearances continued to be instigated by the Royal Nepalese Army (RNA) while the Maoists extorted, abducted and forced displacement of civilians, it added.

"Human Rights Watch found that the government and the RNA have consistently hampered the work of the judiciary and NHRC (National Human Rights Commission)," the HRW report added.

But HRW was equally critical of both the rebels and the state authorities, with villagers in rural areas increasingly subject to reprisals by both parties. Compounding the problem further, anti-Maoist vigilante groups were established with military and moral support from the RNA.

The violence by the vigilante groups was evident in Nepal's southern district of Kapilvastu in the middle of the year where mobs associated with the Village Defense Force went on a three-day rampage in the name of flushing out the Maoist rebels. In the aftermath, some 46 innocent civilians were killed and a 14-year old was raped. Around 600 houses were burnt to the ground leaving scores of families homeless.

The report also said last year that Nepal continued to have the largest reported number of enforced disappearances in the world. All of them were people detained illegally in the barracks and police stations. Although many were also rebels, rights activists had claimed that most of the detainees were merely cases of Maoist suspects, it added.

But the state was not alone in being criticised. The Maoists were also cited with serious abuses like torture and making public executions to teach those who oppose them a lesson. Many of the victims were politicians, teachers or villagers who refused to agree to join the rebels or pay donations, or were killed for allegedly spying for the government.

© IRIN - This article appeared originally on IRIN News.org and is published by engelund.dk according a general agreement. To view the original article, please click here.
IRIN (Integrated Regional Information Networks) is a project of UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
[This article does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations or its agencies.]


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Opdateret d. 20.1.2006