US Reiterates Concern Over Rights Abuses in Nepal
Kathmandu Dec10-The US has reiterated its concern for human rights abuses by both the Royal Nepalese Army and the Maoist insurgents in Nepal.
In a statement issued on Friday on the eve of international Human Rights Day, the American Center of the US Embassy in Kathmandu said the US continues to be concerned about restrictions on free speech through the new media ordinance and raids on independent FM radio stations.
Citing last year’s presidential statement that freedom, peace and security could be achieved only through democracy, respect for human rights, and the rule of law, the American Center said upholding of human rights is essential for peaceful, prosperous and democratic Nepal.
In a statement issued on the occasion of International Human Rights Day (Dec. 10), US Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice recalled that during the State of Emergency early this year, the United States government had urged His Majesty's Government to release all political detainees.
“We continue to be concerned about restrictions on free speech through the new media ordinance and raids on independent FM radio stations,” she said.
She quoted US President George W Bush as saying in his message on Human Rights Day 2004: "During this observance, we encourage all nations to continue working towards freedom, peace, and security, which can be achieved only through democracy, respect for human rights, and the rule of law."
The United States and, we are certain, the Nepali people want to see a peaceful, prosperous, and democratic Nepal, and upholding of human rights is essential to that shared vision, she said.
"Freedom, democracy, and human rights are not American principles or Western values," Ms. Rice – dubbed as the most powerful woman in the world politics-- said. "These ideals are shared by all people. They are the non-negotiable demands of human dignity."
Ever since February 1 Royal takeover in Nepal, the US has shown its concern for the restoration of democracy. It has also suspended military support to the Royal government, fearing it may be used against democracy at the moment.
The US also has urged the King to reciprocate truce with Maoists and pave the way for resolution of conflict.