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Insurgency in Nepal


In February 2002 Maoist rebels in Nepal stepped up their attacks. Over the course of one week, the Maoists killed about 170 police and army troops, and shut down the country when they called a two-day strike. The violence was a sign the long-simmering conflict between Maoists and Nepal's government was becoming a full-fledged war that could take years to resolve. The violence and the strike came just as Nepal's Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba got parliamentary approval to extend a state of emergency for at least another three months.

Until late 2002, the Nepalese government and the Maoists were making some progress in talks. Three demands were put forward by the Maoists; the monarchy must be abolished; there must be an election for a constituent assembly which should write a new constitution; and, in order to have these elections, the present government must resign and an all-party interim government should administer the elections. The government rejected these demands and insisted the Maoists must first renounce violence. The Maoists accused the government of not being serious about the talks, broke the ceasefire and resumed their attacks.

On 04 October 2002, Nepal's King Gyanendra dismissed the country's elected government saying it failed to deal with the Maoist rebellion and put off general elections that were scheduled for November.

In 2002, the most intense year of fighting, 8,000 lives were lost and $5 billion in property damage accrued as a result of the rebellion (mainly to government offices and police stations). The total property damage alone is almost equal to Nepals annual GDP.

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Page last modified: 17-08-2016 17:20:24 ZULU