Nepal Ban concerned over fallout from resignation of Prime Minister

4 May 2009Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has voiced sadness over the turn of events that led to the resignation today of the Prime Minister of Nepal, and has called on all concerned to resolve the crisis through dialogue and consensus. The relationship between the Government and the Chief of Army Staff, who was fired by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal on Sunday, lies at the centre of the turmoil. The Prime Minister, who leads the Maoist Communist Party of Nepal (CPN-M), tendered his resignation after the Chief of Army Staff was later reinstated.In a statement attributable to his spokesperson, Mr. Ban said he “is saddened by developments leading to this resignation.” However, he is also “encouraged by the Maoist party’s assurances of its commitment to the peace process, including continued participation in the drafting of the constitution.”The Secretary-General also appealed for the strict adherence to the 2006 Comprehensive Peace Agreement, especially the Agreement on Monitoring of the Management of Arms and Armies (AMMAA), which stipulates clear and specific restrictions on the Nepal Army and the Maoist army.In a report released last week, Secretary-General noted that progress has been made in Nepal’s peace process, including steps towards drafting a new constitution, but warned that relations between the CPN-M and its main coalition partner, the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist-Leninist) (UML), as well as among the four political parties in the Maoist-led coalition Government, remain “fractious, marked by public acrimony and weak consultation over major decisions.”In a statement issued on Sunday after the army chief was fired, Mr. Ban called on “all concerned to resolve the crisis through dialogue and consensus, with full respect for the provisions of the constitution.”A decade-long civil war, claiming some 13,000 lives, ended in 2006 with the signing of a peace accord between the Government and Maoists. After conducting Constituent Assembly elections last May, the nation abolished its 240-year-old monarchy and declared itself a republic. read more

Africa must be allowed to play rightful role in international affairs Moroccan

Addressing the Assembly’s annual general debate, Nasser Bourita cited a raft of global ills, and noted that while globalization has driven the international economy it has also increased employment instability and widened the economic gaps between and within nations. Similarly, the Internet has created unprecedented opportunities for growth and development but it has also provided a space for extremists and terrorist groups to promote their nefarious aims. “All this means our collective working mechanisms need to be reformed,” said Mr. Bourita, stressing that Morocco is convinced that a global organization that is effective and truly multilateral can help solve the problems the world is facing. Morocco is equally convinced that Africa can no longer be seen as a burden on the global community – the continent must play its role in tackling global challenges, including broader development. “Africa has not held its rightful place in the [international arena]. It should not be dealt with based only on how much assistance it receives, or how “many agenda items it takes up” at UN meetings. Indeed, Africa is imbued with immense human and natural resources. In that regard, Morocco viewed South-South cooperation as a major opportunity for forming development partnerships that could assist African countries, bolster foreign direct investment and increase African participation, with increased equal footing, in global mechanisms. Full statement available (in Arabic) here read more