• UN chief urges end to violence in Nepal


    UNITED NATIONS: UN chief Ban Ki-moon has expressed concern over the recent spate of violence in Nepal and called for a meaningful dialogue between opposing sides on the issue of Constitution drafting, his spokesperson has said.

    Ban’s spokesperson Stephane Dujarric told reporters that the UN Secretary General is closely following the situation in the South Asian nation, which is in the last stages of preparing a new Constitution.

    “He stresses the importance of dialogue and non-violence as well as respect for peaceful protest and freedom of assembly,” Dujarric said.

    “The Secretary-General welcomes the decision of the political parties to tempora- rily pause the Constitution voting process. He urges all stakeholders to use this opportunity to engage in meaningful dialogue,” he said.

    Southern Nepal has witnessed turmoil since lawmakers from major political parties struck a breakthrough deal on August 15 to divide the country into seven provinces. Till now, at least 37 people, including policemen, have been killed in clashes between protesters and security forces.

    The Madhesi parties, disgruntled over the proposal, say the new charter ignores their interests. They demand the seven-provinces model be scrapped and they be given more representation and rights in the new charter.



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