UNSG Ban concerned over political violence in Nepal, stresses need for dialogue, peaceful protest

KATHMANDU: United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has once again expressed his concerns over the recent violence in Nepal.

Stéphane Dujarric, Ban's spokesperson, told reporters in New York on Friday that the UN leader is following closely the situation in the South Asian nation, which is in the last stages of preparing a new constitution. According to him, Ban is saddened by the loss of lives in Nepal.

As many as 40 people, including protesters and security personnel, have been killed in violent protests in different districts of southern Nepal since mid-August.

“He (Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon) stresses the importance of dialogue and non-violence as well as respect for peaceful protest and freedom of assembly,” said Dujarric.

“The Secretary-General welcomes the decision of the political parties to temporarily pause the constitution voting process. He urges all stakeholders to use this opportunity to engage in meaningful dialogue,” he added.

The United Democratic Madhesi Front and different Tharu bodies have been launching agitation in the Tarai-Madhes belt demanding autonomous states for them and protesting the major three parties' decision on seven-province model and the boundaries of purported federal units.