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Nepal's Draft Interim Constitution Presented to Government, Maoist Negotiators

  • VOA News

In Nepal, a special committee presented government and Maoist rebel negotiators with a draft of an interim constitution that would allow the rebels to be included in the government.

Chief government negotiator and Home Minister Krishna Sitaula said Friday the interim constitution will be in place until a permanent new constitution is written by an elected constituent assembly.

A new constitution that limits the powers of King Gyanendra is a key rebel demand for ending the rebels' 10-year old insurgency. The rebels have fought to replace the monarchy with a communist state.

The rebels declared a cease-fire and began peace negotiations in April after weeks of anti-monarchy demonstrations. The protests forced the king to give up absolute power and restore multi-party democracy.

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala and rebel leader Prachanda reached an agreement on restrictions on fighters and weapons.

Mr. Koirala agreed to confine troops to their barracks, and the rebels agreed to restrictions on their fighters and weapons before and during next year's constituent assembly elections. They also agreed to place their fighters under UN supervision.

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