Thursday, April 27, 2006

Int'l Community Welcomes Royal Address

THT Online

Kathmandu, April 27:The European Union (EU) has urged the implementation of the King's announcement to reinstate the House of Representatives without further ado.

The EU took careful note of the royal proclamations on April 21 and April 24 and the Nepali people's reaction to the twin addresses. It also welcomed the monarch's decision to hand back sovereignty to the people.

"EU fully supports the Nepali people in their aspiration for peace and democracy." The EU has also called on alliance leaders to work out a roadmap for the establishment of peace and democracy in the country.

"Action is needed without delay to restore peace to the country and to put in place a democratic, accountable government," said an EU press release issued on Wednesday.

The EU also welcomed the alliance's nomination of Girija Prasad Koirala as Prime Minister. The EU expects security forces to refrain from using force against pro-democracy demonstrations and to be prepared to work under a democratic government, the statement said.

"The EU continues to urge the transition of the CPN (Maoist) into the democratic political mainstream, but this process must include the renunciation of violence and decommissioning of weapons," said the release.

The EU expressed its commitment to facilitate the functioning of all democratic institutions in Nepal.Meanwhile, Australia also welcomed the reinstatement of parliament. "I welcome King Gyanendra's April 24 announcement that the Nepalese parliament is to be reinstated and will recommence sitting on April 28," said Alexander Downer, Australian minister for foreign affairs in a press statement.

He said Australia supported Nepal's return to multiparty democracy and called on the political parties to join hands to form a responsible and effective government."The Maoists should now cease armed violence, turn to mainstream politics and support the rebuilding of peace, democracy and social development in Nepal," Downer said while expressing Australia's commitment to monitor developments here closely.UK foreign office minister Kim Howells also welcomed King Gyanendra's announcement. "This is a tribute to the Nepali people's desire for democracy and peace. We therefore welcome the King's announcement and the reinstatement of parliament," said Howells in a press statement.The statement said that with the return of multi-party democracy and a government with full executive powers, the moment that the political parties were long looking for had come."The Maoists now need to prove their commitment to democracy by giving up violence and by entering into a peace process with the new government, beginning with ceasefire," the release said.The minister reiterated the UK's readiness to assist the new government and the people of Nepal, while also promoting peace, democracy and development in the country.Associated Press reported on Wednesday that Norway would resume its financial assistance following the King's announcement.