ICJ urges justice for war victims

KATHMANDU: Visiting Secretary General of the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) Wilder Taylor today stressed the need to provide justice to victims of the conflict in the process of restoring peace.

Taylor is here on a four-day visit to assess the human rights situation in the country.

Stating that justice is essential in the process of restoring peace in the country, Taylor urged those concerned to deliver justice to the victims. Saying that the delay in providing justice would affect the whole peace process, he stressed the need to uphold the basic fundamental rights of the people.

The international conflict expert was delivering a speech at a programme on Accountability and Rule of Law in Transitional Justice organised by the International Commission of Jurists here.

Citing experiences in various countries, Taylor said that prosecution of the accused in human rights cases is essential in order to uphold the rule of law and human rights. Citing Peru, Argentina and Latin America, he stressed the need to prosecute the accused even decades later.

Peace and Reconciliation Minister Rakam Chemjong said the government has already introduced a Bill to form a commission on disappearance and reconciliation. Saying that the Bill may be passed by the parliament soon, the minister said that along with the promulgation of the law, the government is committed to providing justice to the victims and punishing the culprits.

British Ambassador Dr Andrew Hall said the British Government and the British Embassy in Kathmandu are committed to assisting the government on the human rights front in Nepal. Underlying the need to punish criminals, he expressed his dissatisfaction over the state of impunity.

Addressing the programme, senior journalist Kanak Mani Dixit expressed dissatisfaction over the state of impunity in the country. Saying that the army did not produce Major Niranjan Basnet before the Kavre District Court as per court summons on the Maina Sunuwar case, he urged punishing the culprits involved in human rights violation cases and maintaining rule of law in the country.

Executive Director of Advocacy Forum Mandira Sharma expressed serious dissatisfaction over the disobedience of court orders by the crime accused.