Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Nepal: Non-implementation of human rights commitments jeopardizes peace process

Source: National Human Rights Commission, Nepal; United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)

KATHMANDU- On the occasion of the fourth anniversary of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) released a fact-sheet entitled 'Key Human Rights Commitments of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and their Implementation over the Last Four Years'. The facts-sheet highlights the key human rights commitments under the CPA and their status of implementation by both parties to the CPA.

In its fact-sheet, the NHRC noted some of the positive steps undertaken so far, including the work done on draft bills for the establishment of Transitional Justice Mechanisms - Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) and Commission of Inquiry on Disappearances. However, it also deplores an overall disappointing level of non-implementation of the human rights commitments under the CPA.

The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Nepal (OHCHR) joins hands with the NHRC in calling on the Government of Nepal and the Unified Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (UCPNM) not to delay further the translation of key human rights commitments into concrete measures. Human rights were considered essential elements of the CPA and failure to take these concrete measures may jeopardize the ongoing peace process.

"Recalling the commitments made in the CPA, the NHRC and OHCHR urge the parties to the agreement to, inter alia, stop withdrawal of criminal cases and comply with Supreme Court decisions in relation to human rights violations," stated in a joint press statement released today.

"Further delays in addressing conflict related human rights violations will encourage denial of rights to justice for the victims and eventually strengthen a culture of impunity. These rights are fully guaranteed by national and international human rights law regardless of the apathy by the parties," said Gauri Pradhan, Commissioner and the Spokesperson of the NHRC, and Roberto Ricci, Officer-In-Charge of OHCHR-Nepal adding, "during the Constitution writing process, it is imperative to pave the way of materializing the right to effective remedy for the victims of the armed conflict."