The visiting delegates of the European External Action Service (EEAS) led by Mr. Viorel Isticioaia-Budura, following political consultations with the Government of Nepal and the leaders of the major political parties, have urged all stakeholders in Nepal to forge cooperation towards concluding the peace process at the earliest and writing a new democratic and inclusive constitution within the stipulated deadline.
A press conference was held at Dwarika's Hotel in Kathmandu by the delegation. Also present on the occasion were Dr. Alexander Spachis, Ambassador, Head of the European Union Delegation to Nepal; Mr. Jean Christian Remond, Head of Division India-Bhutan-Nepal and Ms Rensje Terinkm, Deputy Head of Division India-Bhutan-Nepal.
"With ten weeks remaining before the expiration of the tenure of the Constituent Assembly, the political parties are yet to strike a compromise on major contentious issues, including the electoral structure, the form of governance, and federalism. While the form of federalism is for the Constituent Assembly to decide, the EU is concerned that a failure to draft a constitution on time will be a clear disregard for Nepal's aspirations for a more prosperous, equitable, democratic and inclusive system", Mr. Isticioaia-Budura said, adding that the parties should show genuine flexibility in order to reach an agreement on a shared vision of the country's political, economic and social development.
"The EU believes that an early agreement on the electoral system will allow the timely preparation of the elections, and it has received a request from the Government of Nepal to send an Election Observation Mission."
Regarding the issue of the integration and rehabilitation of the former Maoist combatants, Mr. Isticioaia-Budura said that the EU recognises the need to make progress as an important step in the peace process.
The delegates, during the course of their visit, met with President Dr. Ram Baran Yadav; Prime Minister Dr. Baburam Bhattarai; Chairman of the Constituent Assembly Subash Nemwang; Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Narayan Kaji Shrestha; Foreign Secretary Durga Prasad Bhattarai; United Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal; Chairman of the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist-Leninist) Jhalanath Khanal; Nepali Congress representatives; and leaders of the Madhesh-based political parties that form the United Democratic Madheshi Front.