Thursday, July 23, 2009
Prachanda (Dahl) warns of new round of confrontation if India resumes weapons supply
Unified CPN (Maoist) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal has reportedly warned Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal that the government's plan to import weapons from India will derail the fragile peace process.
According to reports, the Maoist Chairman called PM Nepal Wednesday morning and expressed serious objection of his party to Defense Minister Bidhya Bhandari's request to India to resume weapons supply to Nepal.
Dahal also said that import of any weapons while the peace process is still on is against the Comprehensive Peace Accord (CPA) and will completely jeopardize the peace process, leading to resumption of violence and more bloodshed in the country.
India stopped supplying lethal weapons to Nepal following the royal takeover in February 2005, but continued to provide non-lethal military hardware.
On Tuesday, Defense Minister Bhandari met her Indian counterpart A.K Antony and Foreign Minister S.M Krishna in New Delhi and asked for resumption of military assistance to Nepal. She later told the media that India was positive on resuming the stalled military assistance and that details of the support would be finalised by a meeting of a bi-national committee.
Meanwhile, Raghuji Pant, PM Nepal's political advisor, denied there were any talks about Defense Minister's request to India for military assistance between the PM Nepal and the Maoist chairman.
He told Republica Daily that Dahal only requested the prime minister to promote a joint secretary to the post of secretary.
He also quoted PM Nepal as telling Dahal that the government is only seeking "logistic support" for the Nepal Army, not any lethal military hardware.
Maoist leaders say Defense Minister's request to India to resume supply of weapons to Nepal smells of conspiracy to derail the peace process.
Speaking at an interaction program in the capital city Wednesday, Maoist leader Top Bahadur Rayamajhi said government's plan to import weapons from India only goes to show that it wants to jeopardize the peace process and invite a situation of confrontation.
He further said that the prime minister and NC President Girija Prasad Koirala's recent statements against integration of Maoist combatants into Nepal Army reeks of conspiracy to derail the peace process.
Rayamajhi also accused the government of functioning as per the wishes of the Army.
Talking in the same program, Energy Minister Prakash Sharan Mahat had said the government can import weapons considering the country's security needs, but said a final decision on the matter has not been taken.
The Nepal government has not imported weapons from any country since the signing of the CPA with the Maoists in 2006.
Source: Nepal News
Posted by nickglais on 7/23/2009 11:50:00 AM