Nepal Peace Process: All Eyes On Friday High Level Meeting

Nepal is anxiously waiting for the next round of High level talks between the government and the rebels that is scheduled for coming Friday

By Dinesh Wagle
Wagle’s Web Log

Dari katera aayeko dekhda pharkelan jasto lagdaina” [Seeing them coming clean shaven, I feel that they will not return back to Jungle.] While I was talking about Nepali politics with bachelors level students in a Kathmandu college for Kantipur newspaper, a boy named Aasish threw those remarks which I remember every time I see clean shaved Maoist leaders Prachanda, Dr. Baburam Bhattarai and Krishna Bahadur Mahara. If you are optimistic, you will definitely see hopes of permanent peace in shining cheeks of the rebel leaders. [Though I don’t think I really like to be clean-shaven all the time (halka dari is better) I know some people really don’t like daaris at all which is a different matter altogether.] That is just a hope where as some of the behaviors of leaders from both sides make us feel very uneasy.

The constant wrangling from the key players of the peace process makes us wonder about the future of this fragile peace process. We know that this is a bargaining phase and both sides (SPA and the Maoists) are trying hard not to loose the game. There is no doubt that they know that reestablishing peace would be the win-win situation for both sides. To be able to reach to that situation, they know, they will have to loose things equally.

Because of this bargaining, we sometime see such a situation that makes us feel that the peace process would be derailed at any moment. Two instances of failed efforts in the past are enough to create such fear among us. Also the different views that come out from different constituents of the Seven Party Alliance day after day are creating confusion in general public. A few days ago the ‘revolt’ of Nepali Congress MPs against the 8-point Baluwataar agreement, it appeared, nearly derailed the whole process. Also the Maoist’s unwillingness in implementing one of the points from 12 point agreement (that rebels have to return the lands they captured to the original owners in villages) was considered an obstacle in the process. But to many peoples’ surprise, ruling politicians from Nepali Congress and CPN UML held 8 hours long meeting with top rebel leaders in Godavari last week.

They reportedly agreed to turn the current House of Representative interim where Maoists would also be represented. That definitely created hope among the people. Not for long time. Returning office from hospital, Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala reportedly expressed surprise over the so called agreement. Not only that, some of the Nepali Congress leaders who attended the surprise talks started claiming that they didn’t actually agree on turning this House into an interim one. Again confusion started ruling.

Amidst all this confusion as to where exactly the peace process is heading, the country is anxiously waiting for the next round of High level talks between the government and the rebels on coming Friday. There are so many issues to be settled and people want leaders from both sides to be very serious in addressing the problems that the peace process is facing currently. Even if the process is moving very slowly, the only satisfying thing is that nothing wrong has happened from both sides. People are desperate and they want peace at any cost. So desperate that they will not mind seeing the same old bearded Maoists again if that can bring the peace back!

UPDATES ON THE PEACE PROCESS:

Prachanda Baburam After Holding Talks With Nepali Congresss and CPN UML leaders in Godavari village resort. Friday July 14.

Maoist leaders Prachanda and Baburam after holding talks with Nepali Congresss and CPN UML leaders in Godavari village resort on Friday July 14. Pics by Shaligram Tiwari

July 21 ‘summit talks’ to decide on interim House

By Tilak Pokharel

GODAVARI, LALITPUR, July 14 – Top rebel and party leaders held talks here Friday and agreed to convert the existing House of Representatives into an interim parliament by inducting more members. The interim parliament will be officially decided on at the second round of “summit talks” scheduled for July 21. Emerging out of seven hours of talks that started at 8:30 a.m. at Godavari Village Resort, Maoist Chairman Prachanda said the talks were successful in resolving the confusion that surfaced after the signing of the eight-point agreement on June 16.

“The talks have brought about a conducive environment,” Prachanda told the Post, just before the media pack caught up with him. “Illusions and suspicions [over the eight-point deal] have been eliminated.” He said the leaders agreed to implement all agreements from last year’s ground-breaking 12-point pact to the recent eight points “honestly and firmly”. Jhalanath Khanal, a CPN-UML leader who participated in the talks, said the Maoists were “not negative” about the parties’ proposal on inducting some outside members [apparent reference to Maoist members] into the existing HoR. “There was a general consensus to have an ‘interim parliament’. But nothing was decided on its modalities,” Khanal told the Post. “The HoR may add additional members as decided by the seven parties.”

Committees to ensure return of displaced and seized property

NC’s Ram Chandra Poudel said the three parties have decided to form committees at the central and district levels, with two representatives from each party, to make sure that displaced people return home and property seized by the Maoists is restored. “We can also seek support of other parties in this regard,” said Poudel, adding that the move is aimed at creating an atmosphere at the grassroots level that is more democratic and peaceful. Representatives of all the parties will meet tomorrow to prepare circulars for sending to the districts, said Poudel. The Maoists had given a nod to this proposal, presented by the NC and UML.

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Prachanda briefs the press after holding talks with the Nepali Congress and CPN UML Leaders

Maoist chairman Prachanda briefs the press after holding talks with the Nepali Congress and CPN UML Leaders

ICDC complete, team formed to return confiscated property

KATHMANDU, July 15 – The Seven Party Alliance (SPA) government and CPN-Maoist talks teams on Saturday gave a complete shape to the Interim-Constitution Drafting Committee (ICDC) by announcing nine more members to the Committee.
The talks which started at 11:15 am in the Peace Secretariat, Singha Durbar in the presence of the members of both the talks teams, later announced the names of Agni Kharel, Puspa Bhusal, Sushila Karki, Chatra Gurung, Sunil Prajapati, Chandeswor Shrestha, Prarashuram Jha, Kumar Yonjan and Shanta Rai for the ICDC. The ICDC team has now become a 15-member committee including three women. Today’s talks also formally decided that the next round of summit talks will be held on July 21.

Meanwhile, today’s meeting also formed a committee including Binaydhoj Chand (NC), Laxman Ghimire (NC), Yubraj Ghimire (UML), Subendra Pandey (UML), Dinanath Sharma (CPN-M) and Barshaman Pun (CPN-M) to return the property confiscated by the Maoists. All the members of both the talks teams and supervisors, Dr. Deverendra Raj Pandey, Damannath Dhungana, and Padmaratna Tuladhar were present during the talks.

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Maoist leader Prachanda talks to media after the meeting with ruling Nepali Congress and CPN UML leaders

Maoist leader Prachanda talks to media after the meeting with ruling Nepali Congress and CPN UML leaders

Govt talks team to finalize ‘summit talks’ agenda

KATHMANDU, July 18 – The meeting of the Seven Party Alliance (SPA) leaders held at the Bhaktapur residence of Nepal Majdur Kishan Party Chairman (NMKP) Narayanman Bijukche on Tuesday asked the government talks team to finalize the agenda for the second round of “summit talks” between top SPA and Maoist leaders slated for Friday. The government talks team is expected to include human rights, peace deal, arms management, among other issues.

Besides discussing the summit talks, the meeting is also looking to find an alternative to the House of Representatives (HoR), a participant of the meeting said. The meeting also formed a 20-member Task Force along with a steering committee that includes top SPA leaders. The steering committee will give suggestion and direction to the government talks team and the government for the peace process. Likewise, today’s meeting also decided to urge the Maoists to completely abide by the “ceasefire code of conduct.”


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27 thoughts on “Nepal Peace Process: All Eyes On Friday High Level Meeting”

  1. Yeahhhhhh..i was wondering why Bhatarai looked so different. By the way he is the only Maoist I actually appreciate, I think he is much more pragmatic and sensible than the other lefty fundamentalists. But that Ashish student is an exceptional observer and what he said about hope is quite true, the maoist seems committed to the godavari village resort rather than the godavari forest. My vote for future PM is Sitaula or Bhatarai.

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  2. Really if you think about it these guys are just a bunch of really cunning politicians who have exploited the divisions in Nepal to the hilt. Me thinks peace will come this time around because India has finally realised what a huge problem it has with it’s own Maoists. So no more playing around with Nepali Maoists.

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  3. “My vote for future PM is Sitaula or Bhatarai.”

    To see PM in Sitaula now is, I think, the height of optimis. Kangressis have already started khutta tanne karma against Sitaula seeing his popularity in the recent weeks. The whole ‘one man one post’ (either chief of the government talks team or the Home Minister) that a section of Kangressi led by Sushil and Sujata company is the example of how low Kangressis can go to act against a colleague.

    About Dr. Bhattarai, I think he will make a good Prime Minister but there is big BUT immediately after that hope….

    Yes, yes, I also liked that Dari observation of Aasish.

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  4. It does not matter if you vote or not. Prachanda has gained household name than any other leaders in Nepal. SPA leaders are not standing on their feet whereas everybody knows where Prachanda stands. When Prachanda becomes Prime Minister Maoist’s PLA will be disbanded and RNA will be reorganized. I don’t know if he will make a good Prime Minister or not. We have to wait and see. But I am sure if we will have general election for Prime Minister Prachanda will definitely win. Let me know who else could win in the general election for Prime Minister. Definitely not Surya Bahadur Thapa, Pashupati Shamsher Rana, Girija Prasad Koirala, Sujata Koirala. And definitely not Deuba or Nepal.

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  5. Yes Prachanda has gained the popularity and people are expecting changes from new one. In addition he has gun as well.

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  6. I would like to make this point once again. The most important things the Maoists have are not guns. The important thing they have is a politically organized force of people willing to use guns.

    The guns came later.

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  7. The Maoists are negotiating from the position of power. They will get what they want in the end. The SPD has no cards to play.

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  8. It’s very true. SPA has no card to play. Probably SPA should have groomed NA. But now it’s too late. SPA is finished.

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  9. Amen, Culture- rightly put. Romantic notion is the plague that scars people who are not actively in it but are an observerer.

    Its like saying, dudes who rammed the airplanes in Twin tower were organized Jihadese willing to use airplane.

    Airplanes came much later.

    See the double standard these romantics have, mostly of the liberals- western kind. If not in their soil then it is all and good but if it happens in their soil then Homeland security and strip search for all. Get a grip, Neil.

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  10. Lets take the gun out of maoist then we will see, who will win election. If they are really organised political party why they are hesitating for arms management.Their only support is their arms with which they have force normal people to support their party. if they have guts, why dont they conduct their political activites without guns. They cant, because whithout gun maoist cant survive single day.
    Buttom line is maoist is not party, bunch of criminal organised together.

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  11. whatif,

    Many times no comments mean people more or less agree or the comment is not important. But, I am going to comment on your comments and say – “You are absolutely correct!” As your correctness deserves at least my public endorsement.

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  12. neil,
    With their guns the maoists forced people to pick up more guns.Thats why they are not politicians they are lousy goons.I think you should leave journalism and be their spokesperson.I guess mahara is too short and has pretty bad english,u can make up for it.

    whatif,
    Man,u are right.If the maoist lose their weapons the people in the villages will scare them away.Thats why they are so scared to put down the weapons.They know deep down that people hate them and hence are really scared to put down their weapons.Its plain and simple.Dunno why some people cannot see the obvious.

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  13. Maoists are scared to put their guns down. A commander from Dang several months back admitted that he cannot afford to put his gun down. He would only if he was sent abroad for work.

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  14. I don’t think maoist and SPA can go together smoothly in the long run. If maoist is succesful to put their ams forces in Nepal Army, that will be their great achievement in the abscence of Supreme Commander. But we should hope for the best for the sake of peace.

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  15. For me the hardest to digest has been India’s role in all this- heretics such as S.D. Muni & Yechuri all make trip and consult their henchmen (SPA & Maoist)- we all seem to know about this but act nonchalant. Remote controlled nation is what Nepal becoming. I read Kantipur sometimes, I abhor it, and find news as if doctored by the South block. For me they represent India rather than a credible newspaper. A friend who works in Himalayan Bank innocently squealed that Kantipur Publishing House deposited Rs. 64 crore in four banks, one being his.

    More or less, most agree that the way things are, it only means a civil war. Even if Maoist say on the backs of SPa take over, the resistance will crop up, which should anyways, to defeat the unilateralism and draconian laws and policy that the Maoist espouse, with definite curtailing of speech, freedom and individual rights. The endgame for them and to COMPOSA is to make a Nepal a model communist state. Now, the quandary is- knowing all this India is hell bent on supporting Maoist and SPA. What gives? The logic can be only one thing- Nepal not a country but a puppet regime under and by South Block. It shows for India anything is ok and can be handled except the Monarchy. In their eyes, a true Nepal is one with the King, rest is within their realm by hook or crook.

    It is quiet naive to chit chat only about SPA and Maoist because at the end of the day- it is India who is running them both. I do not suspect this, I take this to be the truth. Nor is it a question of India bashing or being anti- India, hell, no! But somewhere in retrospect- I see a well defined map by the India with total disregard to people of Nepal. Not a good move even by the standard they have set for themselves with all the neighboring countries.

    If there is a concerted effort by the powers-that-be then I see Maoist making a hasty retreat with compulsion to join the main stream without the arms. The effort must be on making level playing field for everyone, not just big parties or renegade party but for all without the chance of affording parties (big, renegades) to hijack the better interest of the nation on behest of Foreign country.

    I see less chance of better judgment prevailing in India in regards to Nepal and necessity of Monarchy in Nepal. So it is upon us to set a stage whereby in a gradual process we create a platform that propagates nation building from within, practically putting house in order that can rebuff unwarranted and unnecessary foreign intrusions. To achieve this, I assume we must share the burden in all aspect to formulate a charter that is all encompassing in terms of ethnicity, social, political and economical. The task is uphill but time to start is now before it is too late.

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  16. 1. Kantipur Publishing House deposited Rs. 64 crore in four banks, one being his.
    –Kantipur is a nationalist. The king took his loot to Swiss Bank, African land, and God-knows-whereelse.
    2. Nepal not a country but a puppet regime under and by South Block.
    –This statement has always been true since Jung agreed to become Chowkidars of British in India. Only a democratic Nepal can be truly independent.
    3.necessity of Monarchy in Nepal.
    –…………??????????????????

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  17. As for Kanitpur Deposit, it can be proven and as for Nepal being a chowkidar (diplomacy), tell me which nation is not, except US. As for being a democratic, execute rather than just speak. From what I take it, for you Communism is a democratic, disintegration of a nation is even more democratic while you live large in US of A.

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  18. INDIA CONGRESS and COMMUNISTS have always been on payroll of KGB of erstwhile USSR..now they are trying to expand into Nepal since their support in USSR is gone and in India they are no longer in absolute power as when Indira was alive…

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  19. How Silly can Wagle be!! to quote him
    “If you are optimistic, you will definitely see hopes of permanent peace in shining cheeks of the rebel leaders.” We have to depend on the shine on the cheeks of murderers like Prachanda to see hopes of peace!!!

    Like

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