The US on Thursday removed Nepal’s ruling Maoist party from its list of terrorist organisations — six years after it gave up arms and joined the political mainstream.
The department of state removed the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) and its “aliases” as a specially designated global terrorist entity and as a “terrorist organisation” from the Terrorist Exclusion List.
“After a thorough review, the department has determined that the CPN(M) is no longer engaged in terrorist activity that threatens the security of US nationals or US foreign policy,” said a media note.
The CPN(M) now known as Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) had split in June. Both factions are now likely to benefit from the action taken by the US government.
Following Thursday’s action, CPN (M)’s property and interests in property in the US will no longer be blocked nor will US entities need to obtain licence to engage in transactions with the Maoist party.
“In recent years, the Maoist party has been elected as head of Nepal’s coalition government, has taken steps to dismantle its apparatus for the conduct of terrorist operations and has demonstrated a commitment to pursuing the peace and reconciliation process,” the note said.
It, however, added that the delisting “does not seek to overlook or forget the party’s violent past” but looks ahead towards its continued engagement in a peaceful, democratic political dialogue in Nepal.
Nepal’s Maoists had engaged in a ten-year civil war with the government from 1996 to 2006.