Ongoing truce is fragile, says Jhalanath Khanal

Kathmandu, November 6:

The ongoing ceasefire is very fragile and the country’s problems will further deepen if the state fails to effectively coordinate with the concerned parties, UML leader Jhalanath Khanal said here today.

Reiterating the CPN-UML’s stance on a referendum, Khanal said the people should be allowed to “decide the fate of monarchy through a referendum”. “A weak peace process

cannot resolve the decade-long conflict. The ongoing problems can be resolved only with a package solution - by addressing all the issues in a consolidated approach,” said Khanal.

Following the April mass movement, human rights violations have considerably gone down but haven’t ended as yet, he said. Likewise, agreements between the seven-party alliance and the Maoists should be implemented in practice, he said spelling out the need for SPA and Maoists to sign human rights and peace process accords. “I hope today’s talks in Baluwatar will reach a conclusive end,” he said at a programme on ‘Roundtable on human rights in the peace process’ organised by Human Rights Home.

Nepali Congress (D) leader Bimalendra Nidhi blamed the government for the ongoing state of lawlessness in the country and the Maoists for human rights violations. “The Maoists are presently on the forefront of human rights violations and

they should take responsibility for such activities,” he said. He, however, was optimistic that the peace process would be fruitful.

Maoist leader Matrika Prasad Yadav came down heavily on the international community for being a hindrance to the peace process. “Foreign interference is a major hitch to the ongoing peace process,” he said claiming that the Maoists are flexible and are committed to upholding human rights.

Ian Martin, Personal Representative of the United Nations Secretary General, said the Truth Commission must be established to ensure justice to the victims of the decade-long conflict and punish the perpetrators.

On peace process, he said, “There is not a single model of peace negotiations which can be brought from one country to another.” An attempt should be made to create a conducive environment for an election to a CA, he added.

Former National Human Rights Commission member Sushil Pyakurel said most of the “agendas” of the ongoing negotiations are being decided by just a few political leaders. People’s perspectives are not included in the negotiations, said Pyakurel.