UN team to visit Nepal next week to discuss peace | india | Hindustan Times
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UN team to visit Nepal next week to discuss peace

india Updated: Jul 21, 2006 12:15 IST

A high-level United Nations team will travel to Nepal next week to discuss the world body's proposed assistance in the peace process, particularly in arms monitoring in the lead up to the Constituent Assembly elections expected next year.

Announcing this, Secretary-General Kofi Annan said the recent developments have provided an unprecedented opportunity to achieve a negotiated solution to the 10 years of conflict in the Himalayan country.

"Through consultations with all concerned, the mission will seek a common understanding of the nature and scope of responsibilities the United Nations could undertake in the peace process," Annan said in a statement.

The assessment team will be led by Staffan De Mistura, who until recently was the Secretary-General's Deputy Special Representative for Iraq. The team is scheduled to be in Nepal from July 26 to August 3.

In April, King Gyanendra reinstated Parliament following mass demonstrations across the country and the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) which has been waging an armed rebellion for the past decade declared a three-month ceasefire, both moves that were praised by Annan.

Also in Nepal, a senior UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) official called on refugees from Bhutan to be patient, saying there was now increased hope that their 15 years in exile could be coming to an end.