Nepal rebels agree to suspend fighting

In a major breakthrough, the government of Nepal and communist rebels have agreed to restrict their fighters, lock up their weapons and resume a peace process that had been on the verge of collapse, officials said on Wednesday.

    Earlier talks were stalled due to widening differences (File photo)

    Under the agreement, Maoist rebels agreed to confine their fighters and weapons to cantonments while government troops would be restricted to barracks, settling a major dispute between the two sides.

     

    The agreement was reached at a meeting between Girija Prasad Koirala, Nepal's prime minister, and rebel leader Prachanda and his deputy Baburam Bhattarai.

     

    Wednesday's meeting among the three was the first since the rebels warned earlier this week that the peace talks were on the verge of collapse.

     

    The meeting was closed to the press and the rebel leaders did not speak to reporters after meeting Koirala and Krishna Sitaula, the home minister.

     

    Bhattarai had earlier warned that peace talks faced collapse because of repeated violations of an agreement with the government. The rebels had refused to disarm and disband.

     

    Attempts were also being made by government and rebel negotiators to agree on a joint letter to the United Nations by Wednesday.

     

    UN deadline

     

    UN has given a deadline to the two
    two sides to agree on a peace plan

    UN peace negotiators who visited Nepal last week had given until the middle of this week for the two sides to reach an agreement before the world body would decide whether to step in as a mediator.

     

    The government side had earlier wanted rebel arms to be locked up before proposed elections; but the insurgents said they would only go as far as allowing the UN to supervise the weapons' safekeeping inside secured camps.

     

    The two sides declared a ceasefire and began peace negotiations in April after weeks of pro-democracy demonstrations forced King Gyanendra to give up his authoritarian rule.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Why Saudi-Israeli normalisation could be dangerous

    Why Saudi-Israeli normalisation could be dangerous

    Apart from being disastrous for Palestine, normalising relations with Israel could get Saudi Arabia in real trouble.

    Gender violence in India: 'Daughters are not a burden'

    Gender violence in India: 'Daughters are not a burden'

    With female foeticide still widespread, one woman tells her story of being mutilated for giving birth to her daughters.

    What is Mohammed bin Salman's next move?

    What is Mohammed bin Salman's next move?

    There are reports Saudi Arabia is demanding money from the senior officials it recently arrested.