From A World to Win News Service

News from People's War in Nepal: Negotiations and Repression

Revolutionary Worker #1210, August 17, 2003, posted at

We received the following from A World to Win News Service:

4 August 2003. A World to Win News Service.After the near-collapse of the negotiations between the Nepal monarchy and Maoist revolutionaries, the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) has given the green light for a third round of talks in light of a government agreement to meet certain demands. In response, the Nepali government suggested that the talks resume August 12.

Previously, the CPN(M) negotiation team had given the king's representatives an ultimatum. It warned that if within five days the royal government did not implement measures already agreed to in the second round of negotiations, the Party, which leads a new revolutionary state in most of the countryside, would conclude that the old state had unilaterally broken off the negotiation process.

On July 30, just before the deadline set by the Maoists, the royal government released three captured CPN (Maoist) central leaders and gave an accounting of some of the activists who disappeared in official custody. According to the BBC, the government gave details about the fate of three dozen of the hundreds of such "disappearances," including an important party leader. The royal government also agreed "in principle" to address other outstanding political issues, according to a Maoist Party statement.

On July 31, CPN(M) Chairman Comrade Prachanda issued a statement. "Even though the letter of the state establishment in response to (the ultimatum) has not created a credible atmosphere overall, we consider the letter positive on the basis of its expressed commitments, mainly a commitment to debate the political issues, the release of the three leaders of our Party and proceeding to make the disappearances public. Respecting the wishes of the different sections of the people, civil society, intellectual communities and different political parties, our Party, having decided to sit in a third round of dialogue, urges the negotiations team to go ahead in this process.

"We want to stress that the coming dialogue should focus on substantial political issues rather than on the technical subjects."

Most of the underlying political developments in Nepal since the January 29 cease-fire agreement between the Nepalese old state and the new revolutionary political power were discussed in an AWTWNS article of June 30 (see RW #1208). Since then, the old state has continued violating the cease-fire and the agreed-to code of conduct between the two sides. It has stepped up its surveillance, arrests and harassment of the revolutionary people throughout the country. The security situation of the people, and even of the persons involved in the negotiation process, was jeopardized. The secretary of the Kathmandu liaison office of the CPN(M) negotiation team was arrested. Though released, he was forced to close the office. The office of the Maoist student organization ANNISU (Revolutionary) was also shut down. More importantly, the old state conspired to overshadow political issues by creating technical issues. It tried to create confusion by claiming that everything was sure to be settled at the negotiation table, while simultaneously claiming that it could not be criticized for failing to implement points that had already been settled because there were no minutes of the decisions of the second round of the dialogue. The royal government's attitude and activities had led to a virtual breakdown in the negotiation process.

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