UN concerned as street unrest continue in Nepal's plains
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday called on all stakeholders in Nepal to again share "a spirit of compromise" over the proposed new constitution to end the street violence that has claimed at least 19 lives.
Kathmandu: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday called on all stakeholders in Nepal to again share "a spirit of compromise" over the proposed new constitution to end the street violence that has claimed at least 19 lives.
Violent clashes between security forces and Madhesi protesters have rocked the streets in southern plains of the Himalayan nation this past week opposing the seven-provinces model in the new constitition.
The disgruntled Madhes-based parties, representing the interests of the population of Terai region, demand that the drafting process be halted immediately.
UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric told reporters that the Secretary-General is following closely the situation in Nepal. He is "concerned about reports of violence in recent weeks and saddened by the loss of life."
Ban has urged all stakeholders to refrain from the use of force, denounce violence in all forms and engage in dialogue.
The UN office in Nepal is in regular contact with Nepali leaders and is urging them to seize this historic opportunity to agree on a dispensation that has the widest popular support, said a statement issued by the UN Office in Nepal.
The Secretary-General is hopeful that "the leaders will share again a spirit of compromise," it said.
Anger was simmering for weeks in southern Nepal after the major political parties struck a deal on the new charter.
At least 19 people, including seven security personnel, have been killed in violent protests in southern and western Nepal over the issue of federalism.
More than a dozen policemen and equal number of agitators have been injured during the clashes.
The Joint Democratic Madhesi Front has enforced strike for the past 20 days in Janakpur.
At least one government vehicle and a government office were set ablaze in Rajbiraj of Saptari district in southern Nepal where clashes erupted between the security personnel and the agitating cadres of Madhesi Front.
The protesters demand the seven-province model proposed by the major parties on August 15 be scrapped and that they be given more representation and rights in the proposed charter.
Meanwhile, police have detained Ang Kaji Sherpa, former general secretary of Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities (NEFIN), an ethnic organisation, for spreading message on the social media that would jeopardize social harmony and spark communal riot in the country.
Sherpa was today sent to four-day judicial custody by the Kathmandu District Court.
The new constitution's drafting began in 2008, two years after the end of Maoist insurgency during which about 16,000 people died. The end of the insurgency also brought down the 240-year-old Hindu monarchy.