Nepal Peace Process and DDR Buzz : Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration of Maoist Guerillas

By Dinesh Wagle (back in Kathmandu)
Wagle’s Web Log

So the best thing about the month of August was the joint letter by the government and the Maoists to the United Nations on the contentious issue of, in the very much vague terms, Arms Management. Arms Management! The term has got so much attention and widespread publicity that it reminds me of some of the most widely used terminologies in Nepali politics: Tanakpur Kanda, Satta Samikaran (power equation), Pajero Sanskriti (Pajero culture), Trishanku Sansad (hung parliament), and Floor Cross etc. Then came words like conflict resolution, peace process, ceasefire, constructive king, magh 19 ko Shahi kadam (Feb 1′s royal takeover) and of course, the arms management. (By the way, there are many things to manage in Nepal. Kathmandu metropolitan city was recently criticized for its inability in Waste Management.) Some of these terms were quickly utilized by the mushrooming non government organizations (NGOs). Now, as we are talking about arms management, another term, primarily in English, has taken over the spaces in media: DDR. (No, it’s not the famous DPR or Detailed Project Report related the super famous Mahakali treaty.) DDR stands for, if you don’t know it already, Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration. (DDR is becoming a buzzword in Nepali media and if you don’t know it, you must feel that you are lagging behind in the apparently fashionable, and let me use the term, lucrative, mission of conflict resolution and peace building.)

The use of DDR has intensified as the talks of UN involvement are gaining momentum. People who are introducing this term to Nepal are mostly UN wallas including our own Kul Chandra Gautam. Kathmandu based UN walla Matthew Kahane and guest UN walla Stephen De Mistura, who created pressure for the Maoists and the government to reach an agreement on arms management, also talked about DDR. [We also heard Dan Smith of British peace-building NGO talking about DDR in Nepal. I took part in a video conference with an American army officer a few weeks ago in which he talked about DDR like scenario for Nepal. This morning I was talking with an American girl who is here to study about DDR for woman Maoist guerillas.] Everyone, it seems, is talking about DDR. Still UN is the key player so I checked the website of UN in Nepal to get UN’s take on the terminology which states that UNDP and other UN agencies have been actively engaged in the DDR of ex-combatants since 1991. (Unfortunately, UN’s page for “DDR of Women and Children” is under construction.)

UN Take on DDR

DDR is a complex process, with political, military, security, humanitarian and socio-economic dimensions. It aims to address the post-conflict security challenge that arises from ex-combatants being left without livelihoods or support networks, other than their former comrades, during the critical transition period from conflict to peace and development.

DDR seeks to support the ex-combatants’ economic and social reintegration, so they can become stakeholders in peace. Despite concerns that ex-combatants receive disproportionate benefits in the post-conflict phase, there is a growing consensus that a focus on former combatants in DDR programmes is necessary and justified in order to build confidence and security in war-torn societies, thereby reducing the obstacles and blocks to broader recovery efforts. To achieve the security objectives of a DDR programme, support should be given to achieve full initial socio-economic reintegration of ex-combatants. However, in the context of longer-term reintegration, a balance must be struck between supporting ex-combatants’ specific needs and the needs of the wider community in order to prevent resentment. Emphasis should be placed on moving quickly from ex-combatant-specific programmes to community-based and national development programmes. Failure to do so will result in ex-combatants continuing to identify themselves as belonging to a special group outside society, retarding their effective reintegration into local communities. source

DDR in Nepal: A British NGO’s Understanding

Excerpts from an interview of Dan Smith of International Alert (IA):

Q: Local peace experts say that Nepal is running out of time for the DDR process.

A: Whenever you start the process of planning and discussing you could always think that it was a good idea that you could have started before. I wouldn’t really say that it is too late now to begin. I simply say that there is no point in putting off the discussion on planning. In fact the process of discussing on DDR is itself a discussion that can bring both sides together. That discussion is itself a part of the peace process.

Q: How do you see the peace process developing in Nepal?

A: The peace process is at a very early stage now. If you take any other example internationally you will find very uneven progress in a peace process. So, people need patience and determination in equal measure and you have to all the time be pushing forward not to be too disappointed when there is a roadblock. If you keep the momentum growing, you will go through. But it is a complicated process and time-consuming one.

Q: There are reasons to believe that international DDR missions are already here or arriving in the country soon. What can the Nepalese expect from them?

A: DDR is a very interesting phenomena. It has many components. For DDR to be successful it needs not just a good disarmament and demobilisation programme but also a need for a good economic programme. There also needs to be a decision taken by Nepal about, for example, how big its armed forces should be when peace is finally achieved. That number is likely to be smaller than the combined size of the Nepalese Army (NA) and the Maoists forces. You have to have a plan for bringing those numbers down. So for all these, the key decisions are of the Nepalis. But at the same time there is lot of information about expertise and advice that can be given from outside. You will probably need some sort of international observers to monitor the process and certainly you need international assistance for the social and economic managements of the process. And this is what the DDR missions will be about.

Q: The Maoists are asking why should only they be disarmed. Is the DDR process good enough if it only disarms them?

A: No. That is what I mean by necessity to fix the size, to have a sense of the size of armed forces that a peaceful Nepal requires. Sovereign states have armed forces, border and internal security. So what is the role of the military to be in a peaceful Nepal and how big a force is needed to fulfill that role? The size of the NA has increased during the war. A large army is an economic burden for the country to carry. There is every reason to want the army to be only as big as it needs to be in order to fulfill its role. The whole issue of management of arms and DDR is one which applies on principle on both sides.

Q: Normally, how long does DDR take place in a country like Nepal recovering from conflict?

A: Well, it depends on how you define it. In some circumstances the disarmament phase is never really completed because people wrongly hang on to their weapons. There is a very sad and regrettable feature of bringing conflicts to an end that quite often the weapons used in the violent conflict come into the society and underworld – into the hands of the criminals. Demobilisation can be over fairly quickly. In many cases, it can be done in six to nine months. Reintegration is the more complicated part. This is where the international community is only now learning that reintegration means more than training somebody new skills. It means the ability of the people to return to the towns and villages where they came from and find there a decent job. That is more than a short training programme to assure one. The peace process as a whole lasts for several years, five to 10 years in many places. So it is a long slow process for a society to develop a self-sustaining peace process.

Q: Nepalese women and children seem to be invisible in the talks about DDR process in Nepal. Are they being totally neglected?

A: When it comes to DDR there are women amongst them whether they are fighting or not. And sometimes DDR process focuses purely on those who have guns and who actually fought. But those who did other tasks, not necessarily military, also have a stake in the process. They also need to be looked after and reintegrated. The issue of reintegration of child soldiers can be an enormous one because depending on what age they were recruited at, they may have very little sense of life except in military or in the rebel forces.

In Africa there have been children recruited when they were seven or eight years old and then they go through brutal experiences. So for them to reintegrate into normal life is an enormous challenge.

Q: What are your concerns if DDR process is delayed in Nepal?

A: If in the long term, four or five years time, you have an elected parliament that includes Maoists but also their military force – which are still of the same size with plenty of weapons – and an army with the same size, you both have an economic burden on the country and a permanent risk of return to conflict. I don’t think you will have political stability with that. If instead of having a DDR process, which is organised and planned, you just get the Maoists essentially laying down the weapons individually after leaving the Maoist forces in an unplanned and disorganized way, then you will have a country with a lot of weapons in it that are not under legal control and that do not belong to the police or recognised authorities. That means the crime could get more violent. It also means that if things go wrong politically in a few years time, it might seem tempting for somebody to start a new rebellion rather than try to sort it out in a peaceful way. So if you don’t have DDR, you essentially leave problems around that will come back to you later.

Q: Local experts have accused the government and Maoists of not having a clear plan for the DDR process.

A: Yes, there is no current plan on DDR. Of course, there needs to be one at some point and negotiating that is part of the peace process.

Then there is an article by Shobhakar Budhathoki in today’s Kathmandu Post with DDR on its title:

Disarmament expert, Joana Spear, outlines in a book entitled, Ending Civil Wars: The Implementation of Peace Agreements, five main factors that determine the success of DDR. They include the feasibility of the agreement and its aims; the implementation environment; the capability and resources of international implementers; the attitude of warring parties; and effective verification. Several of these are not yet present for a successful DDR process in Nepal.

Related Background:
Maoists, Nepal Government Send Common Letter to UN

KATHMANDU, Aug 9 – Settling the dispute over the management of Maoist arms and their fighters, the government and the Maoists on Wednesday finally agreed to keep the rebel combatants in specified “cantonments” and Nepali Army personnel within barracks.

After weeks of controversy over the government’s letter inviting the UN to help in decommissioning the rebel fighters, Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala and Maoist Chairman Prachanda signed separate letters of similar content, inviting the global body to help monitor the arms and armed personnel of both the sides.
They sought the UN’s role in five areas vis-à-vis observation of the constituent assembly elections, monitoring of rights violations and implementation of the 25-point code of conduct agreed to govern the ongoing ceasefire.

“Both the sides have agreed to seek UN’s assistance to monitor and verify the confinement of the CPN-Maoist combatants and their weapons within designated cantonment areas,” the letters stated.

Koirala and Prachanda, however, have sought deployment of civilian personnel for the job of monitoring the activities of both sides.

The negotiating team heads said they have also sent a copy directly to the UN by email to meet the Wednesday deadline set by a high-level UN assessment mission that returned to New York last week after studying possible ways of UN assistance in Nepal’s peace process.

Making public the five-point letter sent to the UN, the talks team leaders said this was the third important deal they have made so far to establish peace and democracy in Nepal–after the 12-point understanding (November 22) and the eight-point agreement (June 16).

Sitaula said today’s deal was significant as it was aimed at liberating the people from the threat of weapons on both sides. “We are confident that we can settle all contentious issues through mutual dialogue.”

Mahara termed the letter a “milestone” in addressing the people’s aspirations for peace and said the deal was “historic”. He said Nepal’s politics has taken a new course from today and entered a new phase of implementing agreements in practice.

The signing of the letter has addressed the most sensitive issue, Mahara claimed. “Managing the armies, the major means of war, is itself a sensitive matter,” he said. “We are open to discuss any modality and believe that Nepal may have its own unique modality.”

UN assistance sought for:

1. Continuing OHCHR monitoring of rights situation

2. Helping monitor the 25-point Code of Conduct

3. Confining Maoist combatants and their weapons in designated cantonments and letting the UN monitor them

4. Confining Nepali Army personnel and their weapons in barracks to ensure that they are not used for or against any side

5. Observing the constituent assembly election

Before I end this article, I want to mention about our own experience of DDR 56 years ago. There were no UN and mushrooming Nepali and British NGOs to advise on DDR but Nepal managed to manage Nepali Congress’s Jana Mukti Sena (Peoples’ Liberation Army).

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24 responses to “Nepal Peace Process and DDR Buzz : Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration of Maoist Guerillas

  1. If only DDR was a peace of cake, we would have eaten it long time back. This is bullshit! you think this is all that easy. If natinal integration was the common issue, we did not need DDR or what ever you are trying to feed us with. Dont need foreign thoughts about Nepal, this Mao revolution is different from all the other in the world. Anyways All the best for you and your DDR!

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  2. The whole problem started with ARMS and it should end with it. Maoists have to lay down arms.
    That is the in the best interest of people , nation and international community.
    If talk fails maoists will be sole loser.
    They are yet not listening peoples voice.
    They are claiming to start another revolution saying that
    it will be peaceful. Then why do they need arms.

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  3. Kishor
    You are right to mention that this Maoist movement in Nepal is entirely different from other rebellions. Therefore, talking DDR is just a laxury until the agenda for socio-economic transformation has been finally put in process collectively.

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  4. We are talking about DDR when the issue of arms management still has a long way to go. I strongly believe that Maoists will never disarm unless there are clear indications of NA being no longer loyal to King. This needs restructuring of NA and all top officials loyal to King sacked. The NA will have to then demonstrate its commitment to the people then only will a favorable climate be created for presurring Maoists to disarm.

    And there is Koirala who is not helping at all. We dont need the King anymore but because of Koirala’s foolish statements, there are obviously bound to be suspicions resulting in slowing or even demise of the arms mgt process.

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  5. DDR is a jargon designed to give upper hand to self declared conflict resolution experts.

    Basically it means Nepalese are unable to sort their mess by themselves; so they have to surrender the whole process to aid walas.

    The lesson is -Third party observers are needed but not to the extent that they dictate their terms and sabotage the peace process.

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  6. What Maoists are today is due to their arms. Maoists without guns are no stronget than Sanyukta Jan Morcha. So, why should they give up guns if what they want to get can not get without arms? Also, who wants to give up the culture of plundering with arms in hand what Maoist taught them? So disarmanent is difficult to acheive even if the intention of Maoist leaders is not doubted.

    Where Maoists will go without guns? They have rained so much havoc, fear and atrocity upon the common people in their home bases that they can hardly venture to return back there without guns. Of course they will prefer to leave this country if Maoists are disarmed or at least they would like to live in a far corner or in a closed camp out of touch of those people. Where the grassroot Maoist can be reintegated? What Maoist has given to the poorest of all? Forcively has taken their sons and daughters to their army and has given death, disability and horror, displacement to people from their homes. So, reintegration is just myth. Most of the Maoists have just thee options, either capture whole of the country and rule as they wish or leave this country as mercinaries, armed or unarmed, or fight a war as gurilla all their life. After all, gurilla war is ‘Bhalu ko kanpat’, dangerous to give up once you catch it.

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  7. “?? ????????? ?? ??????????? ?? ??? ??????????? ?-????? ????? ?????? ???, ????”

    ?? ??? ?????? ??? ?? ?? ????? ??????? ??? ? ??? ??? ??? ?????? ??? ? ?????? ?? ????? ??? ????? ???? ?? ???? ?? ?????? ?????? ????? ???? ??? ?????? ?????? ???? ????? ??? ?????? ???? ???? ???? ???????? ?????? ???

    ????? ????, ????? ?? ??? ???? ?? ???? ??? ??? ????????? ?????? ? ?? ????? ?? ?? ???? ?????? ? ???????? ????? ????? ?? ??? ????? ????? ??? ???, ??? ???, ?????? ??? ???? ??? ??? ???? ????? ???? ???????? ? ?????? ??? ?????? ???? ????? ????? ??? ??? ??????????? ?????? ?????? ????? ??? ??? ????? ? ????? ???? ?????? ???? ??? ????? ????????? ?????? ????? ??? ????????? ????? ??? ??? ??? ????? ??? ???? ??? ???? ????? ????????? (??? ???? ???? ??? ? ???????/??????? ?? ????? ?????)

    ?????? ??? ???? ???? ?? ??? ????? ?, ??????? ??? ??? ?????? ?? ?? ????? ??? ?????? ?, ?????? ?? ???? ????? ??????? ?, ??? ?? ??? ???????? ???? ??? ?? ??????????? ??????? ?? ?? ?????? ???????? ?? ???? ?? ???? ?? ??? ? ?? ??????????? ?????? ????? ??? ?????? ??? ???? ????? ?? ???? ???? ??? ???? ??? ????? ?? ???? ???? ????, ?? ???? ?? ????? ?? ????????, ?? ?? ?? ??? ??????? ????? ???? ????? ?? ??? (??????, ?????, ??????) ?? ??????? ? ?
    ???? ????? ??? ???? ???? ??? ?????? ??? ?? ??? ???? ???! ??? ??? ?? ?????? ???????? ?????? ???! ??? ??????? ???????? ??? ??? ? ?! ?? ?????? ? ?? ?????? ??????? ???? ?? ????? ????? ??? ??????????? ????, ?????? ?? ? ?? ???? ???!

    ??????????? ????????? ?? ????? ???? ????????? ???? ??? ? ?????? ??????? ??????? ????? ????? ?????? ????? ??????????? ?????? ( ??? ?????? ??? ??? ????? ?? ???? ????? ??? ) ????? ????? ?? ??????? ???? ???? ????????
    ???? ????? ????? ????????? ???? ???? ??? ???? ?? ???????????? ? ?????? ????????? ??????? ???? ???? ??? ?????? ??????? ? ?? ???? ??? ????? ?? ?? ??? ?? ?? ?? ??? ? ???? ?????? ?????? ??? ????? ?? ????? ??? ????? ????? ????? ??? ?????? ???? (?????? ?????) ?? ?????? ??????? ??? ?? ???? ????? ???????? ???????? ????????? ?? ?????? ??? ????? ?? ????? ??????? ?? ?? ?? ???? ?? ?????? ?? ?????? ??? ??? ????? ? ????????!
    ??? ??? ??? ??????? ????? ????? ?? ???? ?? ????? ?? ????? ???? ?

    ??????????? ? ???? ??? ???? ???? ??? ?? ???? ??? ???? ?? ????? ???????? ?

    ?????? ?? ??? ??? ???? “???? ????? ??????? ? ??? ???? ?????? ????? ?? ??? ??? ??? ?????? ?? ??? ?????? ???? ? ?????? ?
    ?????? ????????? ?? ????, ????? ?? ????, ??????? ?? ????, ?????? ??? ?? ?????? ????, ???? ??? ?? ?????? ???? ?????? ???? ???, ??? ?
    ??? ????? ?? ????? ?????

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  8. ah! the obvious fruits of western education– coining of impressive but at the same
    time intimidating jargons like ‘DDR’, by the sheer virtue of its sophistication
    80% of the problem is solved– that it’s intended to represent, so, the (inventors)
    thought rather hoped.

    the fat cash they draw, gazing through the windows at the chaos/mayhem at yonder land,
    sitting on the cushy chair of UN or some INGOs buildings is paramount with the
    intellectual labor that that have to go thru to come up words such as ‘DDR’ and the miracles it is going to do.

    it’s not just UN/INGO wallas, our own politician/civil servants/policy makers, they
    always manage to come up with such ‘nep-sanskrit’ terms that would you keep your
    mouth open in aghast and at the same time blush with shame, since you don’t have a clue, what the mumbo jumbo means.

    but sadly, the inventors of such jargons spend more time on coming up with
    ‘bombastic’ words than its content.

    ‘DDR’, ‘FDR’, ‘ABC’, ‘ka kha gha’ , no matter what, it’s the same sh**, different wrappers.

    i will have my own take on DDR: Deranged Delusional Rajya

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  9. yahoo, please stop being a pessimist and look at the brighter side of things. Lets not forget that we decided to invite the UN coz we couldnt handle it ourselves or couldnt trust anyone else.

    Stuffs like DDR etc were conceptualized by experts who’ve seen and experienced similar situations like we have in our country today. Of course, it may not necessarily work in Nepal, but what other options do we have? These guys have proposed the best practices they feel fits Nepal but it is upto us to help them map the problems, identify synergies, streamline our needs and also take a proactive role in evolving the process that best fits our nation.

    So instead of making baseless criticisms, lets intead discuss how we can make this work for us.

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  10. Because the concept sounds pretty rational to me. And at this juncture, we can certinly do with some help.

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  11. very few nepalese have the notion of how difficult this re-integration is going to be.

    first of all, there is no economic growth activity and no jobs, for maoist cadres and for non maoist nepalese

    secondly, the sheer number of nepal army and police,including armed police, is going to be expensive affair to keep on maintaining. why not send the extra army to lebanon or any other peace keeping mission

    thirdly, what do you do with ex maoists? they will no longer be able to suck money from ordinary nepalese. right now its the population which is feeding the maoist army. there is effectively a resource crunch in the national level. should we send these militia to dig road untill they come back to sense that one day they have to make a family and earn a bread.

    fourthly, dont expect big UN help or aid agency for a big dollar infusion. There is no free lunch.

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  12. patriot aka desh-vakt

    i will graciously heed your comment, and hurl my pessimism out of window and don my optimist hat, from here on.

    insallah! i am in my good health, and i don’t think i am going to pass away anytime , until then, i will see, where ur experts/DDR/optimism takes us.

    hail DDR!!

    good day!

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  13. Patriotic Citizen

    Nepal right now is totally confused. The decission makers are not sure what they are doing. Specially the Prime Minister is crossing the the river in two boats. Right now SPA is totally in wrong fottage. SPA agree with Maoist in many points. But instead of implementing the points SPA and the Prime Minister are going in the wrong direction. Either SPA has to say to Maoist, our principles differs so we can’t go along with your demands or SPA has to implement the agreed points if Nepal wants peace. If not there will be no peace in Nepal for very long time.

    Recently Lt. General Katuwal was promoted to Chief Of Nepal Army by Girija Parsad Government. It clearly shows Girija Parsad is totally Royalist. Every one in Nepal know that Katuwal is the man of Royal Palace. The general and Katuwal were the main personnel of Royal Palace to suppress people’s movement in April. Instead of suspending Mr. Katuwal Girija is promoting him. The direction clearly shows extremely wrong. With this administration of Girija there will be no peace in Nepal. The prime Minister is too old to think about future of Nepal. The PM should resign as soon as possible. Because of his wrong direction in the government it will cost too much to Nepal. Five minutes delay in Nepal today will cost our future generation at least 10 years in future.

    We Nepalis wanted new Nepal. But as long as those old creaps are there nothing will change. Instead everything is going in circle and backward. Now it is clear why the PM been advocating Royal Palace. By the look of it Girija Parsad Koirala is a extremely sinical person. he does not want Nepal to move forward. Since restoration of democracy in 1990. Girija Parsad Koirala had always played dirty game to drag Nepal backward. The surprising part here is almost all SPA leaders knew the attitude of Girija. But why they elected him as PM is the major question here. Are those SPA leaders out of their mind or they are all opportunists.

    By the look of it all party workers have to rethink about their leaders. Why all those supporters are supporting to their leaders when they see all those mistakes here. Or are those supporters of all party are putting blind folds on?

    By this situation of the country shows that there will be no peace and general public once again has to go to street again. Nepal has to restart everything from the scratch. General public of Nepal can no longer trust old politicians anymore. Nepalis have to build Nepal by their selves by removing thos old and corrupted politicians. This is the only way to move forward and build new Nepal.

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  14. ????? ?????? ?????? ??????? ?? ??? ????????? ?????? ?????? ?, ??????,

    ?) ????????? ???????? ???? ???? ???? ????? ?????? ??????????? ???????? ? ???? ????? ???????? ? ??????? ???? ??????? ???? ?? ??????? ????????, ?????? ? ??????? ??????????? ???????? ?????????? ?????????? ??????

    ?) ???????? ??? ????? ? ????????? ?????? ?????? ?? ??????????? ????? ?? ????????? ?????? ?? ???????? ????? ??? ???? ?????????? ????????? ????? ?????? ?? ??!

    ?) ?????? ??? ???????? ???? ??????????? ????? ???? ????????? ?????????? ???? ????? ?? ?????? ??% ?????? ? ???????? ? ??????? ???? ??????? ?? ??????

    ?) ????????? ??? ??????? ?????? ?? ??? ??????? ???? ?????? ?? ??????? ???? ??? ??????? ????? ???? ????? ?????, ?? ?????? ????? ?? ?? ??? ?????? ?????? ???? ???????? ??????? ???? ???? ??? ?? ?????? ??? ??????? ????????? ???? ????? ????? ??????? ?????????? ???? ???? ?????? ????????? ???? ?????? ?? ????? ??????, ?? ??????? ??????? ??? ????? ???? ????? ?????? ??????? ??????? ?? ?? ?????? ? ? ?????? ?? ??? ? ??? ???? ?????? ????? ???? ???? ??? ????? ????? ?????????? ??????? ??????? ????? ???????? ???????? ???? ?????????

    ??) ????? ? ?? ??????? ??????? ????? ??? ?????? ????? ?????? ??????! ??????? ? ????????? ????????! ????? ?????? ????? ???? ?????? ?????? ???? ???? ???????? ???????? ????? ?????? ????????? ??????? ????????? ??????? ???????? ?????? ???? ?????? ????? ???? ????? ??? ??? ?? ?????

    ????

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  15. ok Comment no. 14, If not make katwal COAS then whom to make? Ram bahadur? gagan? rup narayan? or you?

    In any country , be it china or be it us or any banana republic, always the second in command becomes the main man after main man retires.

    just update your rotten mind by studying. First study books, history book then come to comment on blog.

    wise person always learns from history and secure future

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  16. In my opinion, Kattu and his follower should be sack and promote others from the NA. Its the national army, not a army of any faction as like MB army. MB army should be dissolved immediately, they are irrelevent anymore. They are abuducting people in the presence of arms.

    I think most of the people has confusion about MB. They are not sacrifying for multiparty democracy, instead they are fighting for thier own defination of “democracy – prachanda road”. They are using any means whether it “civil society” or SPA. They will never drop their arms.

    They will remain as they are today and will be extinct from the scene after a loss of many thousands of nepalese. Communist looks very fancy on the book only, not in the real situation.

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  17. devil_in_mercedes

    Most of the brilliant Nepali students are either studying or emigrating. The semi-literate youth are going to foreign lands as a labor force, even some of them never to return.

    That leaves half-frustrated, half-lost youth who dont know what to do?? join maoists? join mobs? join as “political karya-kartaz”?? burn tires?? idle away in cyber-cafez??

    Nobody my friend seems to care about nationality ?? For there to be a nation, there needs to be integrity, unity, harmony, forgiveness, dedication, diligence, philantrophy, self-lessness…..

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  18. Among a well meaning set, DDR is drink, dance and relax.

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  19. Patriotic Citizen

    Present situation of Nepal does not account who is second in line for promotion. Due to their performance in suppressing general public in April during people movement. This is the right time to exclude all those defaulters from service. Regrettably our coward temporary government failed to judge the situation. One can immagine if Katwal suppresses general public while he was second in command. When he becomes the incharge of Nepal Army what he will do. This is the main fault of our incompetnet politicians in the government right now including Girija.

    On the other hand present coward Nepal government is encauraging young people to go abroad. All brains of Nepal are migrating to various countries in the world. Nepal is going to remain with people with very little knowledge. It looks politicians are doing it deliberately so they can find followers for them. When all brains leave the country how can the country be developped?

    Present government of Nepal is absolutely useless. Nepal must have constituency assembly election as soo as possible. Longer Nepal waits worse it will get. Please save our beautiful coutry. If need be please chase all those incompetent politicians from the country if they can’t take action to defaulters of April movement.

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  20. There is never going to be an election for a constituent assembly. I am sure. Not in Nepal i mean.

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  21. The August 9 agreement
    By BIPIN ADHIKARI
    The Kathmandu Post August 17 2006

    The question whether the Maoists must give up their weapons before joining the government and whether the weapons of the Nepal Army’s will be subject to similar monitoring seems to have been settled down showing little concerns for the miseries the people of Nepal continue to suffer because of the small arms floating inside the country.

    The government has agreed on August 9 the key condition of the Maoists of not surrendering arms immediately, ending a nearly two month-old stalemate on this issue. The agreement in the form of separate letters sent to the United Nations to this effect intends to lead the nation to the constituent assembly elections in the atmosphere of uncertainties, and leaving many important issues unresolved.

    The sacrifice made by the government goes beyond the necessity of maintaining a line of dialogue with the Maoists, and virtually gives in to the arms and the armed men.

    An armed group, which has been fighting to topple the monarchy and establish a communist republic, is now allowed to contest (fight?) elections with the thousands of the small arms in their reach. The government has conceded not to question and verify the numbers of the Maoist militias bearing arms; their names and personal details; their hierarchy and commanding positions; and the nature of their movement in this interim period. It has given in without knowing the real numbers of their fighters, the true extent of their arsenal; weapons known to have been used; arms looted from the security forces; sources of intelligence; and agencies (national or international) supplying the logistics.

    Also ignored is the right of the nation as a whole to know everything about the Maoists before the nation goes to the polls. People must also be enabled to know where these arms came from. This is possible only after the arms are decommissioned fully. Unless people have the opportunity to raise their concerns, and there is an environment which assures their protection, they cannot exercise their voting rights effectively, and without fear of intimidation. Inherent in these rights are freedom of expression, freedom of assembly and freedom of movement. For elections to be considered genuine, they have to reveal and give effect to the freely expressed will of the people. As long as there are arms around, the rest of the democratic parties will not be able to contest elections in the same footing.
    By conceding to the Maoist arms, the government has imposed many visible and invisible limitations on the ability of the Election Commission, the job of constituency delimitation, registration of voters, nomination of candidates, the actual polling, and enforcement of international standards. It must also be emphasized here that the measures like electoral observation and verification on the actual polling days (to be conducted by the United Nations) cannot just be enough to ensure free and impartial elections in this situation.

    The August 9 talks between Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala and Maoist Chairman Prachanda ended just with the two sides agreeing to confine the rebel fighters and their weapons within designated cantonment areas under the United Nations supervision during the upcoming election process. This is what the rebels have been demanding for a long time; and the rest of the country had difficulties to accept. The basic modalities for monitoring and verifying Maoist fighters and their arms should have been worked out there itself. The formulation is vague, without specific commitment and the whole strategy is to enable the combatants, their arms and ammunitions outside the public approbation. This, no doubt, is the most questionable form of arms management.
    Arguably, the United Nations is expected to come with necessary qualified civilian personnel to monitor and verify the confinement of the Maoist combatants and their weapons within designated cantonment areas. But it is doubtful how the United Nations can control the process and the desired outcome (or exercise supervision) without a clear cut authority to separate rebels from their arms within those camps, as the non-Maoists have demanded. If the idea is to allow the combatants to retain control over their weapons, even in the cantonment sites, then the strategy of employing only the civilian personnel to monitor them is just a very weak response.

    Additionally, the identical letters sent by the government and the Maoists to the United Nations are silent about the date on which the arms management is to begin, and the gap that must exist between the completion of the process of the arms management and holding of the constituent assembly elections.

    These letters do not give any clue as to the demand of the Maoists to join the government before these elections; and the ongoing abductions/recruitment of new combatants and open-theatre rebel parade. There is also a conspicuous silence about the demand of the Maoists that the Nepal Army be restructured to integrate the combatants even before the polls? Have all these demands been conceded?
    With so many small arms scattered around, and ever increasing violent forces in the country, it is nothing but a sheer madness that the five point outline submitted to the UN can contribute to peace in such a critical environment. There is a very strong likelihood that these arms if not decommissioned would be used to terrorize the majority of the adults who will be going to cast their vote in the constituent assembly elections (if they are held at all). If what is going on under the banner of the Maoists is any indication, their ability to discipline their militias in such a tense environment of competitive politics (even if they want) is profoundly open to discussion.

    The decision-making about the arms management lacked the honest and forthright way in which the consultation process should have been carried out in the presence of the United Nations and the depth and content of the discussion brought before the people. Thus, the only apparent effect of these letters is to reach an agreement to ensure that the Nepal Army remains in its barracks and its weapons are not used for or against any side. This undoubtedly is no more than another act of appeasement to the Maoists.

    Unless the Maoists clearly and demonstrably give up their arms and not just say that they are “beyond use”, the violence from the Maoist side is always imminent.

    Is life cheap when it is politically expedient? Could the Prime Minister say who is calling the shots behind; and who are the faceless men who sign nothing yet dictate negotiations and the pace of events.
    [HUMAN_RIGHTS_NEPAL@yahoo.co.uk]

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  22. There can be no elections of any kind while there are armed rebels in the villages.

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  23. Big to you thank that contain such resource. Probably all this keeps on enthusiasm. Many thanks for your work

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  24. Awesome blog! Do you have any helpful hints for aspiring
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