Rights situation has improved here: US report

Kathmandu, March 7:

A US report has shown that the human rights situation in Nepal has improved after the formation of the government of political parties last year.

According to the annual report publicised last night by the US State Department’’s, Democracy, Human Rights and Labour Wing, the US has expressed worries over the continued abductions, extortions, and violent activities by the Maoists even after the ceasefire and signing of the peace accord.

The report while evaluating the human rights situation of 2006, states that the independent media was active and expressed a wide variety of views. Hundreds of independent vernaculars and English-language newspapers were available, representing various political points of view. It said the Members of the security forces and the Maoist insurgents committed numerous grave human rights abuses during the year. Arbitrary and unlawful use of lethal force occurred frequently.

Police arrested numerous journalists before and during the popular uprising, many for protesting in favour of press freedom in restricted areas.

In most districts, the Maoists set up “people’s courts.” In July, Maoist Supremo Prachanda claimed he had ordered such courts to stop functioning in urban areas, although such courts continued to function across the country.