Friday, April 20, 2007

Govt, MPRF, Maoists responsible for Gaur killings: OHCHR report

UN human rights watchdog OHCHR-Nepal Friday held the government, Maoists and Madhesi People's Rights Forum (MPRF) responsible for the Gaur killings, which left 29 dead.
In a press release publicising the UN body's report on the incident, OHCHR Nepal chief Lena Sundh said that all three sides, the MPRF, the government, and the Maoists shared the responsibility for the Gaur killings.
"The incidents highlighted once more the weaknesses of law enforcement agencies who, aware of the potential for clashes and other violence, were grossly ill-prepared to ensure effective crowd control," the release said, adding that the Nepal Police and the Armed Police Force had failed to prevent the violence from happening by not persuading the organizers to move or postpone the rallies.
"The mechanism to coordinate security and law and order, the district security committee chaired by the Chief District Officer, broke down and failed to function on the day of the rallies".
"The Gaur incidents have demonstrated the fragility of respect for the human rights and the capacity of the State to protect them," the release further said.
The report has also not exculpated the Maoists, stating that the CPN-M action in organizing a rally at the same time and place as the MPRF, as it has done in other locations too, was provocative.
"Its (CPN-M) cadres also brought at least one weapon and at least one socket bomb to the rally. Such actions are incompatible with declarations of respect for the right to life, freedom of expression and assembly."
The OHCHR has also urged the CPN-M top brass to give clear directives to its cadres not to disrupt rallies and political activities by organizations with different political opinions and has flayed both the CPN-M and the MPRF for involving children under 18 in its programs.
"Both the CPN-M and the MPRF exposed children under 18 to the possibility of harm by including them in their rallies, in contravention of international child rights standards; one girl died".
Meanwhile, the OCHHR report has debunked all rumors of rape and mutilations of the five female victims of the incident before they were killed, stating that the OHCHR found no evidence of rape or sexual mutilation in course of its interviews with witnesses and others.
"According to medical experts, there were no external signs of rape on any of the female victims. OHCHR is concerned that the public diffusion of such allegations without proper verification only served to augment the anguish of the victims’ relatives," the release said.

No comments: