Peace seems a reality now, says Martin

Nepalgunj, May 5:

Pointing to the declaration of ceasefire by the Maoists and the state, chief commissioner of the UN Office for the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR-Nepal) Ian Martin today said the restoration of permanent peace now seemed a reality.

Talking to journalists at the Nepalgunj office of OHCHR-Nepal, he said: “The announcement of ceasefire by the state and the Maoists both has paved the way for peace.”

“Though Janaandolan has restored democratic rights, a lot still remains to be done to ensure their total acceptance,” Martin said, urging the Maoists and the seven-party alliance to utilise the “great opportunity” positively.

Asked to comment on the show of strength by the Maoists and the security personnel evenafter the announcement of ceasefire, Martin said: “Demonstration of strength does not bode well. A code of conduct should be formulated, and the parties and the Maoists should adhere to it.”

Hailing commitments made by the seven parties and the Maoist supremo Prachanda, he urged both the sides to live up to their commitments.

The United Nations (UN) is ready to offer its good offices for the resolution of the problem if both the seven parties and the Maoists ask for it, he said.

“The government will be advised not to send those security personnel, who suppressed the democratic movement, on peacekeeping missions,” Martin said.

Calling on both the sides not to violate human rights and humanitarian laws, Martin said: “The announcement of ceasefire is not enough. Its implementation is important.”

OHCHR is searching for missing people and also probing into the excessive use of force by security personnel during the democratic movement, Martin said.

Martin also met local leaders of the seven parties today.