Maoists to be rehabilitated into society not army: Koirala
Kathmandu | Sunday, Jul 19 2009 IST
Nepali Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala has said the ex-combatants of the Maoist People's Liberation Army will not be integrated into the Nepal Army but they should all be rehabilitated into the society.
''Nowhere in the Comprehensive Peace Accord is there written that the Maoist combatants should be integrated into the Nepal Army,'' nepalnews quoted Mr Koirala as saying in his home town Biratnagar before leaving for here. ''The behaviour of the Maoist combatants will be corrected and then they will be rehabilitated into the society,'' he said. Maoists want to integrate about 20,000 of their former fighters who are living in various UN monitored camps, into the Nepal army.
The Maoist government collapsed after they tried to sack army chief General Rukmangad Katawal, who opposed the idea of integrating the Communist guerrillas into the national army.
All the major political parties, including the coalition partners, opposed the Maoists decision and withdrew their support. President Ram Baran Yadav, at the request of the majority of the political parties, did not implement the decision of the Maoist government.
The political parties and the international community became suspicious of the Maoists after a local television channel broadcast a video tape of its chairman and former Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal in which he said they will capture the state after their combatants have been integrated into the national army.
He also said the real number of the Maoists combatants was 7,000 but they had increased that number to 35,000 and the UN verified about 20,000 as real fighters.
Mr Koirala, who played a crucial role to bring the Maoists to the peace process and sign the peace deal when they were declared terrorists and red corner notice was issued by the Interpol, said his belief and confidence towards the Unified CPN (Maoist) and its chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal was gradually ''dwindling''.
When asked about the Maoists joining the government, he said he doesn't know whether the former rebels will join it or not, ''but the current government will not fall until the new constitution is drafted and thereafter a general election is held''.
-- (UNI) -- 19DF1.xml
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