Nepal gets fresh consignment of US rifles

PTI | ByPress Trust of India, Kathmandu
May 09, 2004 08:14 PM IST

Nepal, battling Maoist rebels, has acquired a consignment of M16A2 rifles from the US, said Royal Nepalese Army sources.

Nepal, which is battling Maoist rebels, has acquired a consignment of M16A2 rifles from the US, Royal Nepalese Army sources said.

The weapons arrived Kathmandu yesterday aboard a special aircraft from the US, they said.

This is part of the regular deal between US and Nepal, which is fighting the Maoist insurgency, said Army Spokesman Brig. Gen. Rajendra Bahadur Thapa.

He, however, declined to confirm the number of weapons the US government has provided to Nepal under the deal. Nepal has received the first consignment of M16A2 seven years back, but in a limited number, he added.

A national daily quoting army sources said the consignment consists of about 500 sophisticated weapons.

The Royal Nepalese Army's 70,000 plus force is being modernized providing them with latest and sophisticated weapons. The US has already delivered some 3,000 such automatic rifles to Nepal Army in January last year as part of the cooperation to combat terrorism.

US has been providing military hardware, logistic and training to the Royal Nepalese Army since Nepal launched campaign against the Maoist in November 2001 declaring the rebels as terrorists.

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