Ban calls for Nepal mandate extension

KATHMANDU, Nepal, Jan. 9 (UPI) -- The head of the United Nations has called for a six-month extension of the U.N. mission in Nepal to help support the peace process.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has recommended the U.N. Security Council approve a six-month extension of the U.N. mandate in Nepal. Ban called for a smaller U.N. presence in Nepal, as requested by the new Nepalese government, but said the peace process remains fragile and continuing international support is needed, the United Nations reported.


Ban said despite the successful elections in 2008, which resulted in the formation of a constituent assembly led by President Ram Baran Yadav, many of the peace process agreements have yet to be implemented. Ban called on leaders in Nepal to continue the process of reintegrating former Maoist combatants and to draft a constitution.

"It is particularly regrettable that the political parties have, to date, failed to reach agreement regarding the special committee to supervise, integrate and rehabilitate the Maoist army personnel, so that it can begin its important work," Ban said in a statement.

"That is one important indication of the wider tensions among the political parties, which could imperil the completion of the peace process and the drafting of the Constitution. It is clear that the United Nations, if it is not to risk jeopardizing the peace process, cannot immediately terminate the support it has been providing."


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