WASHINGTON, Oct. 5 (UPI) -- The U.S. State Department expressed hope Tuesday the Nepalese government and Maoist rebels start talks soon.
Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage met with Nepalese Deputy Prime Minister Bharat Mohan Adhikari Monday to discuss Katmandu's response to the Maoist insurgency.
"The Deputy Secretary stressed the need for political unity among Nepalese parties in facing this threat and his hope that the Government and the Maoists would reach agreement on talks in the near future," the department said in a statement Tuesday.
Armitage also urged the Maoist rebels to halt their attacks on government and civilian installations.
Maoist rebels want to turn the world's only Hindu country, a constitutional monarchy, into a communist state.