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Maoists must renounce violence in Nepal: Boucher

By Super

Washington, May 18 : US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Richard Boucher has said the Bush administration is skeptical about Maoists' commitment to a ceasefire in Nepal as they have begun to violate it.

Testifying before the House Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific here yesterday, Mr Boucher said the US is willing to provide help to restore democracy in the Himalayan Kingdom but it remains wary of the Maoists commitment to ceasefire, especially after decades of a brutal insurgency.

''We are looking at ways in which we can further strengthen democracy and through greater public participation in the political process, strengthen the momentum for peace,'' he added.

But to participate in the political process that is just evolving in Nepal, Maoists must renounce violence, he added.

''Should they lay down their weapons, end their use of violence and intimidation and accept the rule of law and will of the Nepali people through the democratic process, there will be a place for them in Nepal's political arena,'' he said.

He said the Maoists have accepted a commitment to support multi-party democracy.

''In keeping with the high hopes and expectations of the people of Nepal, the government is moving forward to implement this agreement with the Maoists but we remain wary,'' he added.


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