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Nepali President urges parties to back constitutional amendment

By Ians English

Kathmandu, Dec 5: Nepali President Bidya Devi Bhandari has urged political parties to focus on implementation of a new constitution and maintain harmony in the country.

She made the remarks while convening an all-party meeting at the Presidential Palace on Sunday night, Xinhau news agency reported.

Back constitutional amendment:Nepal Prez

"Bhandari expressed her anxiety over possible repercussions if the new constitution is not implemented," Vice Chairman of the CPN (Maoist Centre) Narayan Kaji Shrestha said.

She called on all parties to work toward ensuring political stability in the country and forge consensus on the thorny issues relating to the constitutional amendment, said Shrestha.

"Parties need to be mindful about the country's sovereignty and national harmony while taking any kind of decision that may have impact for the long run," Bhandari said.

Leaders from various ruling and opposition parties, including Madhesi parties, shared their views with the President at the meeting.

The meeting came amid squabbles between ruling and opposition parties over the constitutional amendment proposal tabled by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal "Prachanda" last week.

The amendment bill seeks to carve out a new state in western Nepal to meet the demands of Madhesi parties, whose months-long protests last year left more than 50 people dead.

The opposition parties, including Communist Party of Nepal (United Marxist Leninist), Communist Party of Nepal (Marxist Leninist), Rashtriya Janamorcha Party Nepal and Nepal Workers Peasants' Party, have been protesting against the bill.


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