Int'l conference of Asian political parties kicks off

KATHMANDU: The twelfth standing committee meeting of the International Conference of Asian Political Parties (ICAPP), a forum of political parties representing Asia and the Pacific region for the last one decade, kicked off in Kathmandu today.

The basic goals of ICAPP are to promote exchanges and cooperation between political parties with various ideologies, enhance mutual understanding and trust among the Asian countries and promote Asia's regional cooperation through the unique role and channel of political parties, organisers said.

ICAPP also envisages creating Asian parliament and common currency for Asia and the Pacific region. So far, five general conferences and eleven meetings of the Standing Committee have been held.

Addressing the function, Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal said that Nepal is currently undergoing major political transition in the midst of various challenges, particularly relating to institutionalization of multiparty inclusive democracy, rule of law and federalism. PM Nepal said," The Constituent Assembly is actively engaged in the task of drafting a new constitution within the stipulated timeframe of May 28, 2010, to sustain and safeguard the historic political gains made by the people during the last four years."

“The Government is committed to take the peace process to its positive and meaningful conclusion at the earliest. The Special Committee and the Technical Committee are engaged in the preparatory works of integration and rehabilitation of the Maoist combatants in the camps established under the supervision of the United Nations and active participation of the major political forces,” said PM Nepal.

Nepal pursues a policy of cultivating friendly relations with all countries, particularly Asian countries and our immediate neighbours, PM Nepal said, adding, "Tremendous rates of growth in China and India with whom we enjoy excellent relations at political and economic levels, and their emergence as global economic powerhouses are important positive factors for us.” “Scrupulous pursuance of the five principles of Panchsheel, non-alignment and promotion of peace, stability and disarmament in the world are fundamental objectives of our foreign policy,” he added.