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UN rights office urges justice for Nepal civil war crimes
UN rights office urges justice for Nepal civil war crimes
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[JURIST] The UN Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR) [official website] on Monday released [press release] a report [text, PDF] urging justice for victims of international law violations that occurred Nepal’s civil war. Approximately 13,000 people were killed [JURIST report] and 1,500 people went missing during the conflict between Nepal’s government and the Communist Party of Nepal, which lasted from 1996 to 2006. In a foreword to the report written by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay [official profile], she noted that in 2006 both sides to the conflict signed a Comprehensive Peace Agreement [text, PDF], which obligated them to ensure justice and reparations for the victims, but they have failed to do so:

Six years later the transitional justice mechanisms promised in the peace accords have still not been established, and successive governments have withdrawn cases that were before the courts. Perpetrators of serious violations on both sides have not been held accountable, in some cases have been promoted, and may now even be offered an amnesty.

The report focuses on five categories of offenses: unlawful killings, enforced disappearances, torture, arbitrary arrest and sexual assaults. According to the report, some of the acts committed in these categories during the conflict may amount to war crimes.

In April Human Rights Watch (HRW) and the International Commission of Jurists [advocacy websites] urged [JURIST report] Nepal to reject blanket amnesty [press release] plans for international crimes committed during the country’s civil war. In same month, UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Kyung-wha Kang [official profile] spoke [JURIST report] to the Constituent Assembly of Nepal (CA) [official website] about several human rights issues in the country, including a reluctance to prosecute war crimes and insufficient progress increasing women’s rights [texts, PDF]. The OHCHR and HRW [JURIST reports] have both previously appealed to the government of Nepal to investigate human rights violations allegedly committed during the civil war.