INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY: Right Call

Two former prime ministers, who are the leaders of the ruling alliance, have defended the role of the international community in the current political stalemate

Feb. 14, 2015, 5:45 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: Vol: 08 No. -16 February. 13- 2015 (Falgun 1, 2071)

At a time when the government led by Prime Minister Sushil Koirala is expressing its displeasure over the international community’s insistence on peace and stability through consensus, former prime minister and RPP leader Surya Bahadur Thapa and CPN-UML leader Madhav Kumar Nepal have defended the move taken by the international community to avert the political crisis in Nepal. 

Former Prime Minister Thapa and Nepal even want their role in bringing UCPN-Maoist in the constitution writing process as well as for peace and stability of Nepal.

“It is a normal practice of the international community to urge all political forces to go together. In my opinion, consensus also involves the process.  This is not a big issue. However, it has been made a big issue. The international community’s concern is genuine as they want the new constitution with participation of broader forces and their intense discussions to come up with an agreeable document. This is normal for the international community to have such concerns,” said RPP leader and former Prime Minister Surya Bahadur Thapa in his interview to Nepal Samacharpatra Daily.

In a recent meeting with envoys of European Union, Prime Minister Sushil Koirala reportedly expressed some reservation over the statements issued by the international community and explained to them that the ruling parties were compelled to opt for a majoritarian course for writing the constitution only after their efforts to forge consensus over more than seven years had failed.

An EU delegation led by Ambassador Rensje Teerink had called on Koirala at the latter´s official residence in Baluwatar and discussed the current political issues and constitution-writing process, among others, on February 2.

According to a press statement issued by the prime minister´s press coordinator Prakash Adhikari, Prime Minister Koirala during the meeting explained the circumstances that led to the failure to promulgate the constitution within the set deadline of January 22. “The efforts to forge consensus among the parties failed as a few political parties refused to maintain flexibility in the broader interest of the people,” Prime Minister Koirala said during the meeting.

Prime Minister Koirala reportedly expressed his resentment over the word 'consensus' used by the international community in writing the new constitution.

“The refusal by the opposition parties to participate in constitution-writing process was undemocratic as the majoritarian course is in line with the Interim constitution, CA regulations and political agreements made by the High Level Political Committee comprised of four major political forces."

The international community, including India, suggested the ruling alliance to maintain the optimum level of restraint to avert any crisis and appealed to ruling coalition to accommodate the UCPN-Maoist in the process.

CPN-UML leader K.P. Sharma Oli even went a step ahead expressing displeasure over the statement expressed on behalf of the international community. Oli even rebuffed Indian ambassador Ranjit Rae, who carried Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s message for peace and stability in Nepal through broader agreement, among all the forces.

“If we take the suggestion given by the international community positively, we find that they too wish to see the promulgation of new constitution soon and end of conflict with consensus politics. There is the other side as well,” said CPN-UML leader Madhav Kumar Nepal in his interview in Kantipur Daily. "When I met Indian, American and Chinese ambassadors to Nepal, they did not talk negatively. Even UN officials did not mention any negative issue during my meeting.”

After the statement of Thapa and Nepal, even Prime Minister Koirala, who was adamant to issue any statement in favor of dialogue, issued a political statement inviting UCPN-Maoist led alliance to the negotiations. 

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