The United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) monitoring the fragile peace process in the Himalayan nation would leave the country in January next year.
Agreeing to a Nepal government request, the UN Security Council on Wednesday granted the mission its seventh extension—four months beginning September 16.
The council also stated that UNMIN’s mandate will terminate on January 15, 2011 and it will leave Nepal as sought by the government.
Expressing “concern at the recent tensions in Nepal”, it asked political parties to take full advantage of UNMIN’s expertise and complete the delayed peace process within the extended tenure.
The SC asked the government and Maoists to implement this week’s agreement on bringing former rebels within ambit of a Special Committee and rehabilitate and integrate them into security forces in four months.
Since 2007, both Maoist rebels and Nepal Army are being monitored by UNMIN as per the peace agreement signed by Maoists and prominent political parties.
In recent months, UNMIN has come under attack from most political parties for allegedly siding with Maoists at the cost of the Nepal Army.
There were differences on its mandate and extension. The government and most parties wanted it to leave or monitor just the Maoist rebels.
But the Maoists wanted it to continue for six more months with the same mandate.
Although the government and Maoists sent separate letters to SC regarding UNMIN’s role, they agreed to extend its tenure by four months with the same mandate on September 13—two days before UNMIN’s term was to expire.