Nepal: UCPN (Maoist) starts handing over keys of arms containers

Thursday, 01 September 2011

In what would be viewed as a major headway in ongoing peace process, ruling UCPN (Maoist) Thursday started handing over keys of the weapons containers to Army Integration Special Committee (AISC) as per the party’s earlier decision.

Despite facing sharp opposition from the hardliner faction led by party vice chairman Mohan Baidya, the Maoist party started handover of the keys of arms containers to the AISC from the Third Division of PLA cantonment in Shaktikhor of Chitwan and Second Division in Dudhauli of Sindhuli district.

Organising a programme in Shaktikhor cantonment premises, Maoist Division Commander Udaya Bahadur Chalaune ‘Deepak’ and Division spokesperson Janak Bista ‘Kuber’ handed over the keys of the arms container to the AISC representatives Thursday evening.

Likewise, the Maoists have also handed over keys of the arms container at the Second Division in Dudhauli of Sindhuli district. According to the source, the keys were handed over as per the command of the PLA headquarter Thursday afternoon.

Handover of the keys of the containers, which is also mentioned in the agreement signed between UCPN (Maoist) and United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF) before Prime Ministerial election last Sunday, is one of the key components of the peace process.

In a major breakthrough in the peace process, the Maoist party earlier yesterday had agreed to handover weapons stored in the containers in all the cantonments to AISC. Newly-elected Maoist Prime Minister Dr. Baburam Bhattarai, who also leads the AISC as per the existing provision, was under pressure to move forward with practical action to prove his commitment to the peace process.

PLA commanders had been holding the control of the keys of the containers where 3,475 Maoist weapons have been stored.

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