Kathmandu, April 19
The government today nominated 21 ambassadors to head Nepal’s diplomatic missions across the world.
At least 22 diplomatic outposts were either headless or the terms of ambassadors leading them were about to end.
With no parliamentary hearing committee in place it will take some more time for the nominated ambassadors to assume office.
Two former ministers are among those nominated for the ambassadorial posts. Former foreign minister and CPN-UML leader Mahendra Bahadur Pandey has been named ambassador to China, while former minister and RPP-N vice-chairman Niranjan Thapa has been nominated to serve as Nepal’s ambassador to Russia.
The government has also named Unified CPN-Maoist central committee member and indigenous leader Lucky Sherpa to serve as the ambassador to Australia, Dalit leader Padam Sundar for Bahrain, Professor of Tribhuvan University Dr Mahendra Singh for Qatar and chief editor of The Rising Nepal Yubanath Lamsal for Denmark.
Career diplomats nominated today include Durga Bahadur Chhetri to be Nepal’s envoy to the United Kingdom, Tara Prasad Pokhrel to Brazil, Ramesh Khanal to Germany, Jabindra Aryal to Egypt, Sewa Adhikary Lamsal to Pakistan, Rishiram Ghimire to Myanmar, Prakash Subedi to Austria and Lok Bahadur Thapa for Belgium.
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Earlier, the Nepali Congress-led coalition government had appointed Arjun Karki as Nepal’s ambassador to the USA and Dip Kumar Upadhyay to India.
Due to the rift among the parties on nomination of the ambassadors, the diplomatic positions were lying vacant for several years. The post of diplomatic head for Oman is still lying vacant.
The nominees will have to undergo a parliamentary hearing before the Minister of Foreign Affairs sends their names to the countries concerned for an agreemo.
The President will formally appoint the ambassadors as soon as their agreemo arrives.
A version of this article appears in print on April 20, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.