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Nepal to miss Constitution deadline; UN calls for talks

Nepal was set to miss Thursday’s deadline to draft a Constitution due to sharp political divisions over contentious issues, even as the UN asked the country’s warring parties to resume dialogue and show flexibility for larger national interest.

“Although the political leaders have successfully achieved many of their peace process commitments since the end of the conflict in 2006, agreement on a new constitution is a vital remaining task,” the UN Resident Coordinator Jamie Mc Goldrick said here in a statement.

The statement on behalf of the international community here came a day after the violent brawl in the Nepalese Constituent Assembly over the move to use the voting method for Constitution drafting. The violence left 14 people, including two prominent ruling party leaders injured. The incident occurred when the ruling parties were trying to push their proposal for a new draft Constitution through voting before tomorrow’s deadline.

“The international community is concerned that relations between the parties have been marked by tension in recent days,” the statement said adding that “we call upon them to provide forward-looking leadership in the larger national interest and to continue constitutional negotiations in a spirit of flexibility and urgency”.

“The constitution is meant to be a foundational document that will guide the country’s course for the foreseeable future,” the UN Coordinator said adding that “to be implemented peacefully and offer stability it will require the widest support from the Nepali people”. The international community has also called upon the parties to redouble their efforts to secure an inclusive constitution.

“This is the time for the political parties to demonstrate leadership and fulfill their historic responsibility,” the UN Coordinator said.

Nepali lawmakers had imposed a January 22 deadline over themselves after the polls to the second Constituent Assembly. 
Agencies

Agencies

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