UN chief asks Nepali leaders to arrive at consensus

UNITED NATIONS, May 15: United Nations general secretary Ban ki-moon has urged political leaders in Nepal to forge a consensus on their differences in the country’s constitution-making process.
The UN chief expressed concern over the rising tensions and disruption of life across the Himalayan nation.
Through his spokesperson, Mr Ban yesterday said,”With time fast running out before the May 28 deadline for the Constituent Assembly to complete its work, it is imperative for the political parties of Nepal to rise above their differences and reach a consensus. Having taken important historical steps since 2005, they cannot afford to disappoint the Nepali people.”
The South Asian country has been plagued by political disputes since the civil war between Government forces and Maoists, which claimed 13,000 lives, formally ended in 2007, and its monarchy was abolished. Several deadlines to draft a new constitution have been missed.
The spokesperson said,”It is important to adhere to existing agreements to meet the aspirations of traditionally marginalised groups. At the same time, efforts should be made to assuage the concerns of communities who fear they would be disadvantaged under a federal system.”
He also noted that the Secretary-General urges all, particularly those carrying out public protests, to do so peacefully, with full respect for the rights of others and without disrupting humanitarian access across the country.
“Mr Ban calls on the Government to meaningfully address the escalating tensions and respond to the situation in accordance with national and international law,” the spokesperson added. (UNI)


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