Nepal Maoists rejoin cabinet after monarchy deal

KATHMANDU Sun Dec 30, 2007 7:44pm IST

Maoist leader Prachanda is seen in Kathmandu  in this August 12, 2007 file photo. REUTERS/Ankita Shrestha/Files

Maoist leader Prachanda is seen in Kathmandu in this August 12, 2007 file photo.

Credit: Reuters/Ankita Shrestha/Files

Related Topics

KATHMANDU Dec 30 (Reuters) - Nepal's former Maoist rebels rejoined the interim government on Sunday, two days after parliament voted to abolish the monarchy, ending three months of deadlock that had threatened to derail the peace process.

The Maoists, who ended their insurgency under a 2006 peace deal, quit the government in September demanding the monarchy be immediately abolished and a system of proportional representation introduced for upcoming elections.

The cabinet they have rejoined is now supposed to hold the twice-postponed elections for an assembly meant to draw up a new constitution to cap the peace process.

"The first priority of this government is to hold the constituent assembly elections," said Maoist member Dev Gurung, after being appointed as minister for local development on Sunday.

"Necessary laws will have to be made or amended to conduct the elections. That may take a few days after which the government will announce the new date for the polls."

A government statement said Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala had added seven Maoist nominees to his multi-party government, five as cabinet ministers and two as junior ministers.

The new ministers will be sworn in by 83-year-old Koirala on Monday, state-run Nepal Television said.

During a 10-year insurgency that killed more than 13,000 people, the holding of constituent assembly elections had been a key demand of the Maoists.

The vote to elect members of the assembly, under a mix of proportional representation and first-past-the-post constituencies, is now expected to be held in April.

But the assembly will not have the power it was supposed to have, to decide on the monarchy's future -- since that decision has now been made by parliament.

Now it will merely be obliged to endorse the decision to turn Nepal into a republic, and will not have the power to reject or change it.

King Gyanendra will be allowed to live in the royal palace, albeit without any power, until the assembly meets.

(Reporting by Gopal Sharma; editing by Simon Denyer)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Modi In Japan

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Book Talk

Book Talk

Reema Abbasi and a glimpse of Pakistan’s Hindu past  Full Article 

Coal Block Scam

Coal Block Scam

Govt urges Supreme Court to not cancel some 'illegal' coal mines.  Full Article 

U.S. Open

U.S. Open

Djokovic, Murray in quarters clash, Serena advances.  Full Article 

Pakistan Protests

Pakistan Protests

Pakistani protesters clash with police, soldiers secure state TV.  Full Article 

Photo

Iraq Violence

Iraq violence killed at least 1,420 in August - U.N.  Full Article 

Mass Hacking

Mass Hacking

Actress Jennifer Lawrence contacts authorities after nude photos hacked.  Full Article 

Fighting Ebola

Fighting Ebola

Poor response to Ebola causing needless deaths – World Bank head.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage