Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Civilians Struggle to Survive in Nepal’s Civil War

[1] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, early March 2004.

[2]."Nepal Country Brief," September 2004, [online] http://www.worldbank.org.np/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/COUNTRIES/SOUTHASIAEXT/NEPALEXTN/0 (retrieved September 28, 2004.)

[3] "UN Commission on Human Rights Experts Reiterate Grave Concern Over Situation in Nepal," July 14, 2004.The U.N. Rapporteurs were on torture; violence against women; extrajudicial, summary, and arbitrary executions; independence of the judiciary; freedom of opinion and expression; protection of human rights defenders; enforced and involuntary disappearances; and arbitrary detention.

[4] See section V: EXTRAJUDICIAL EXECUTION OF TWO GIRLS, KAVRE DISTRICT.

[5] See section VI: EXECUTION OF ANTI-MAOIST ACTIVIST GANESH CHILAWAL.

[6]Nepal has a number of distinct political bodies that operate under the name of Communist Party of Nepal, including the CPN-Maoist, but also more mainstream parties such as the United Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Nepal (CPN-UML).Although these political bodies share the "Communist Party of Nepal" name, they operate as distinct political organizations and are often mutually antagonistic, considering themselves the only legitimate Communist party in Nepal.The non-Maoist communist parties in Nepal have rejected the Maoist's resort to armed rebellion against the government.CPN-UML is a significant mainstream political force in Nepal.

[7] The attacks on the police posts in Rolpa, Rukum and Sindhuli, caught the police completely by surprise, and the Maoists were able to capture the stations with little or no resistance.The Maoists seized caches of explosives stored in the police stations.This tactic of overcoming poorly equipped police stations and seizing the arms and ammunition stored there became the pattern of Maoist operations in the early years of the conflict.

[8] "The Historic Initiation and After," The Worker, no. 2, June 1996.

[9] Deepak Thapa, A Kingdom Under Siege: Nepal's Maoist Insurgency 1996-2003, (Kathmandu: The Printhouse, 2003,) p. 43.

[10] Prachanda is the acknowledged leader of the CPN Maoist.Ram Bahadur Thapa, alias Badal, is the head of the military wing, and Baburam Bhattarai is the ideological weight behind the political wing.During the 2003 ceasefire, all major figures in the Maoist movement came out into the open except for Prachanda.The CPN Maoist is a member of the Revolutionary International Movement, which it sees as part of a new International dedicated to world revolution.The Maoists are also members of the Coordination Committee of Maoist Parties and Organisations in South Asia (CCOMPOSA).

[11] Thapa, A Kingdom Under Siege, p. 45.

[12] See, for example, Prachanda, "Appeal of the Communist Party of Nepal," March 16, 2004. (stating, inter alia, that the "Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) is a responsible party which by standing at the forefront, has been leading the People's War in order to establish real democracy, respecting the sovereignty of the people-the right to rebel against class, national, regional and gender exploitation and oppressions of the old feudal state...Our Party has been committed to the fundamental norms of human rights and the Geneva Conventions since the historic initiation of the People's War.")

[13] "Plan for the Historic Initiation of the People's War: Theoretical Premises for the Historic Initiation of the People's War," The Worker, no. 2, 1996.

[14] The CPN-M, for example, called the CPN-UML a "revisionist reactionary" party which "protects feudalism, imperialism and expansionism."CPN Masal similarly was labelled "rightist revisionist" for having participated in democratic elections.Nepal Rastriya Buddhijibi Sangathan, 2054 BS, p. 12-13.

[15] See Amnesty International, "Human Rights Violations in the context of a Maoist peoples' War," December 1997, for a detailed discussion of the human rights abuses committed during Operation Romeo.

[16] A similar operation code-named Kilo-Sierra II in the western and mid-western regions in 1998 resulted in a similar increase in allegations of gross violations of human rights by the police forces.

[17] "Forty Point Charter of Demands," Dr. Baburam Bhattarai (Chairman, Central Committee, UPFN), February 4, 1996.

[18] Many of the points in the Forty-point agenda are found in the Constitution of Nepal (1990).

[19] ibid.

[20]The government created the Armed Police Force in January 2001, to help the police fight the insurgency movement.

[21] "Maoists Guerrillas kill at least 35 People in Attacks Across Nepal," Associated Press, November 24, 2001; "Nepal Rebels Kill 5 in Ambush, post-truce toll 42," Reuters, November 25, 2001; Maoist Rebels Kill More Policemen in Nepal," Kyodo News, November 27, 2001., "At least 100 Killed in Maoist Attacks over Weekend," CNN, November 29, 2001.

[22]Girija Prasad Koirala, the Prime Minister at the time, had tried to mobilize the army, through the National Defence Council, in July 2001, in Holeri.The reports of this mobilization are controversial with some analysts arguing that the Army deliberately disobeyed the mobilization order.What is clear is that there was no combat in Holeri following the mobilization order.

[23] See National Human Rights Commission, Incident of Doramba, Ramecchaap, 2060 BS (2003) for detailed investigation of the massacre.Prachanda and Baburam Bhattarai publicly pointed to Doramba as the incident provoking the withdrawal of the Maoists from the ceasfire (Maoist Information Bulletin # 4, Revolutionary Worker # 1212, September 14, 2003, Kathmandu Post, September 9, 2002.)The government maintains that the Maoists had been preparing for a resumption of hostilities all along, and simply used the Doramba massacre as a convenient excuse for returning to war.

[24] "Nepal Rebels Kill Colonel," BBC World, August 28, 2003. For an analysis of the breakdown of the ceasefire and its consequences, see International Crisis Group, Nepal: Back to the Gun, October 22, 2003. http://www.crisisweb.org//library/documents/asia/nepal_back_to_the_gun.pdf (retrieved September 2, 2004.)

[25] TADA was first promulgated as an ordinance (TADO) in 2001, and then enacted in a revised and somewhat toned-down version as TADA, in April 2002.

[26] Section 7 of TADA allows the government to designate any person or organization involved in either terrorist, or disruptive acts, as "terrorist."The definition of "terrorist and disruptive acts" in Section 3(2) of TADA is very broad, including, any persons who "conspire, cause, compel, commit, instigate, establish, remunerate or publicize acts of terrorism or disruptive acts."Defining "disruptive acts" as terrorism has allowed for the application of TADA to legitimate political activities such as protests, for example.

[27]Section 5(a) of TADA grants the security forces the "special power" to arrest without warrant persons suspected of involvement in terrorist or disruptive acts; Section 5(m) allows the security forces special power to place persons under surveillance, including arrest and lock outs; Sections 9 and 17(5) allow for the detention of persons for periods of up to ninety days on the basis of 'a reasonable ground for believing' that the detained person has been prevented from committing terrorist or disruptive acts. A more draconian version of TADA, which allows the security forces to hold detainees incommunicado for up to a year, was contemplated, but has not been implemented because of intense public criticism.The TADA, which expired on April 9, 2004, was extended by a further two years by a royal proclamation on the date of its expiry.

[28]Several provisions of TADA violate Nepal's international obligations under the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and International Convention on Economic and Social Rights (ICESCR).See INSEC 2004 Human Rights Yearbook 2004, (Kathmandu: Informal Sector Service Center (INSEC), 2004) for a detailed analysis.

[29] "Nepal Emergency Declared," BBC World, November 26, 2001.

[30]Article 115 (Emergency Power), Constitution of the Kingdom of Nepal (1990).

[31] Declaration of State of Emergency, Royal Proclamation, His Majesty King Gyanendra, November 26, 2001.

[32]The Chief District Officer (CDO) is a civil servant from the Home Ministry, and is the highest ranking member of non-elected government at the district level.As such, the CDO is responsible for the administration of district government, and for the maintenance of law and order.

[33]The Public Security Act (PSA) allows for persons to be held in preventive detention for up to 90 days, on the orders of a local authority (such as a CDO), and is extendable up to 12 months.

[34] Sections 7 and 9, TADA.

[35]INSEC 2003-2003 yearbooks.

[36] Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflicts, G.A. Res. 54/263, Annex I, 54 U.N. GAOR Supp. (No. 49) at 7, U.N. Doc. A/54/49, Vol. III (2000), entered into force February 12, 2002.Nepal signed the Optional Protocol in September 2000, but has yet to ratify it.Under international humanitarian law applicable to civil wars (e.g. Protocol II, art. 4) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), ratified by all U.N. member states except for the United States and Somalia, fifteen is established as the minimum permissible age for military recruitment.In all other respects, the CRC's general definition of a child is any person under the age of eighteen.Convention on the Rights of the Child, G.A. res. 44/25, annex, 44 U.N. GAOR Supp.(No. 49) at 167, U.N. Doc. A/44/49 (1989), entered into force Sept. 2, 1990.

[37] The Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), ratified by all U.N. member states except for the United States and Somalia, also establishes fifteen as the minimum permissible age for military recruitment. In all other respects, the CRC's general definition of a child is any person under the age of eighteen.The Optional Protocol to the Convention, which entered into force in February 2002, corrected this anomaly by prohibiting the compulsory military recruitment of children under the age of eighteen.It also establishes that "armed groups that are distinct from the armed forces of a State should not, under any circumstances, recruit or use in hostilities persons under the age of eighteen years."Nepal has signed but not yet ratified the Optional Protocol.

[38] Following the constitutional reforms of 1990, the Rastriya Panchayat Party changed its name to Rastriya Prajatantra Party.Most of its leaders are former Panchas.

[39] Thapa, A Kingdom Under Siege,19.

[40] Deepak Thapa, Kathmandu Spring: The People's Movement of 1990, (Kiyoko Ogura: Himal Books, 2001,) 32.

[41] For a general history of the Royal massacre and its aftermath, see Jonathan Gregson, Massacre at the Palace: The Doomed Royal Dynasty of Nepal, (New York: Miramax, 2002); Isabel Hilton, "Letter from Kathmandu," The New Yorker Magazine, July 30, 2001; Official Investigative Report, His Majesty's Government of Nepal, June 14, 2001.

[42]Article 127, Constitution of the Kingdom of Nepal (1990)

[43]Article 36 (1), Constitution of the Kingdom of Nepal (1990)

[44]Article 42(4), Constitution of the Kingdom of Nepal (1990)

[45]See, e.g., Dhruba Adhikari, "Nepal's Right Royal Political Muddle," Asia Times, June 6, 2003; Yash Ghai"Crisis Beyond Legality" Himal Magazine, November 2003.

[46] Article 31 of the Constitution provides as follows: "Question not to be raised in Courts:No question shall be raised in any court about any act performed by His Majesty."Article 56.1 further protects the monarch: "No discussion shall be held in either House of Parliament on the conduct of His Majesty, Her Majesty the Queen and the heir apparent to His Majesty."

[47] Limits on the King's rule making powers can, for example, be amended through the mobilization of Article 116; such an amendment is arguably within the spirit of the preamble of the Constitution, and need not amount to a whole sale revision of the Constitution.Likewise, the institution of the Parliament can be strengthened through Article 116.See Ghai, "Crisis Beyond Legality," for a careful analysis of the procedures available under Article 116.

[48] Article 45 (6), Constitution of the Kingdom of Nepal (1990.)

[49] The five main political parties are the Nepali Congress Party (NC), the Communist Party of Nepal United Marxist-Leninists (CPN-UML), Nepal Sadbhavana (Ananda Devi) Party, Majdoor Kisan Party and Samyukta Jan Morcha Party.

[50] Human Rights Watch Letter to Prime Minister of Nepal, April 22, 2004.

[51] "Government Collapses as PM Thapa quits," May 8, 2004, [online] http://www.nepalnews.com (retrieved May 7, 2004.)

[52] Members of the NHRC have told Human Rights Watch that their work is actively impeded by the government.Certain members of the NHRC have received death threats as well.

[53] Col. Deepak Thapa, Spokesperson, Royal Nepal Army, Kathmandu, March 9, 2004.Col Thapa is now the Deputy Spokesperson of the RNA.

[54] "His Majesty's Government's Commitment on the Implementation of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law," March 26, 2004.

[55] "Commission Adopts Chair Statement on Afghanistan, Haiti, Nepal. Timor-L'este and Colombia, Commission for Human Rights," U.N. High Commission for Human Rights, April 21, 2004.See also "Agenda Item 9: Question of the violation of human rights and fundamental freedoms in any part of the world," Amnesty International statement at Commission for Human Rights 60th Session, AI IOR 41/013/2004, April 6, 2004.

[56] International Committee of the Red Cross, Commentary, IV Geneva Convention (Geneva: International Committee of the Red Cross, 1958.)

[57] ibid.

[58]See, e.g., statement of Maoist leader Prachanda on March 16, 2004: "Our Party has been committed to the fundamental norms of human-right [sic] and Geneva Convention since the historic initiation of the People's War. Anyone who without prejudicially [sic] judges the facts of eight years can find that our People's Liberation Army has been providing a respectful behaviour, treatment to the injured and release in good conditions of the prisoners of war who have been arrested from the army and police of the enemy combatant. Our Party has been expressing its commitment not only on the Geneva Convention in relation to the war but also on the international declarations in relation to the human rights." (from Appeal of the CPN-M) [online] http://www.cpnm.org/Notices (retrieved September 27, 2004); Prachanda statement from December 15, 2003: "The CPN (Maoist) has consistently sought to uphold the universal principles of human rights and relevant clauses of Geneva Conventions on war. The Party has time and again publicly welcomed any international monitoring, preferably under the UN auspices, of the human rights situation in the country." (from Maoist Information Bulletin, No. 7, News and Views.)

[59] Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions of 1949.

[60] For the full text of Common Article 3, see [online] http://.www.icrc.org/ihl.nsf//O/e.html (retrieved September 28, 2004.)

[61] United Nations General Assembly Resolution 2200 A (XXI) of December 16, 1966 (entered into force on March 23, 1976.)

[62] United Nations General Assembly Resolution 39/46 of December 1984, (entered into force on June 26, 1987.)

[63] According to the preamble of the Declaration on the Protection of all Persons from Enforced Disappearance, "enforced disappearances occur, in the sense that persons are arrested, detained or abducted against their will or otherwise deprived of their liberty by officials of different branches or levels of Governmentfollowed by a refusal to disclose the fate or whereabouts of the persons concerned or a refusal to acknowledge the deprivation of their liberty, which places such persons outside the protection of the law."General Assembly resolution 47/133 of December 18, 1992.

[64] ICCPR Articles 6(1), 7, 9, and 14(1).For a detailed discussion of the human rights violations committed by disappearances, see United Nations Commission on Human Rights, "Report submitted January 8, 2002, by Mr. Manfred Nowak, independent expert charged with examining the existing international criminal and human rights framework for the protection of persons from enforced or involuntary disappearance, pursuant to paragraph 11 of Commission resolution 2001/46," E/CN.4/2002/71, p. 36.

[65] U.N. Declaration on "disappearances" Articles 7, 17, 18, and 19.

[66] U.N. Doc. A/CONF.144/28/Rev.1 (1990), adopted in 1990 by the Eighth U.N. Congress on the Prevention of Crime and Offenders.

[67] G.A. res. 34/169, annex, 34 U.N. GAOR Supp. (No. 46) at 186, U.N. Doc. A/34/46 (1979), adopted by the U.N. General Assembly on December 17, 1979.

[68] U.N. Doc. A/CONF.144/28/Rev.1 (1990), adopted in 1990 by the Eighth U.N. Congress on the Prevention of Crime and Offenders, Principle 9.

[69] The Basic Principles define "law enforcement officials" to include "all officers of the law, whether appointed or elected, who exercise police powers, especially the power of arrest or detention.In countries where police powers are exercised by military authorities, whether uniformed or not, or by State security forces, the definition of law enforcement officials shall be regarded as including officers of such services."Basic Principles, "Note".

[70] Royal Nepali Army News Bulletin, May 25, 2004, [online] http://www.rna.np.html (retrieved May 12, 2004.)

[71] "Army Questions Rebels Attacks," Kathmandu Post, August 19, 2003.

[72] Royal Nepali Army News Bulletin, February 28, 2004, [online] http://www.rna.np.html (retrieved February 6, 2004.)

[73] "Government Soldiers Kill 17 Rebels in Nepal,"USA Today, August 18, 2003; "Shocked Leaders Urge Rebels to Return to Talks Table," Himalayan Times, August 28, 2003.

[74] The Maoists state that they withdrew from the peace talks because of the massacre of its captured combatants at Doramba.The government, on its part, claims that the Maoists were never serious about negotiations, and simply used Doramba as a pretext for pulling out of the talks.

[75] "On the Spot Inspection and Report of the Investigation Committee: Doramba, Ramechhap Incident,"National Human Rights Commission, 2060 BS (2003).See also "Doramba Killings were Cold-Blooded," Kathmandu Post, September 19, 2003; "Storm over Doramba," Nepali Times, October 16, 2003.

[76]"On the Spot Inspection and Report," NHRC.

[77] ibid.

[78] "Storm over Doramba," Nepali Times.

[79] Royal Nepal Army Statement as printed in [online] http://www.nepalnews.com (retrieved August 28, 2003.)

[80]"Storm over Doramba," Nepali Times.

[81]"Major Faces Army Court," The Himalayan Times, March 12, 2004; "RNA Court Punishes Guilty Soldiers," The Kathmandu Post, March 12, 2004.

[82]"Major Faces Army Court," The Himalayan Times.

[83]Human Rights Watch interview with senior UN official, Kathmandu, March 3, 2004; "Storm over Doramba," Nepali Times.

[84]"Major Faces Army Court," The Himalayan Times.

[85]Human Rights Watch interview with Kanak Mani Dixit, Kathmandu, March 10, 2004.

[86]Bertrand Ramcharan, Acting U.N. High Commissioner of Human Rights, September 2003.

[87] "Make NHRC Report Public: EU,"Kathmandu Post, September 17, 2003; "EU Calls for Multi-Party Government," The Telegraph, February 4, 2004.

[88] "Storm over Doramba," Nepali Times.

[89] Human Rights Watch interviews, Belbhar,villagers, names withheld, March 15, 2004.

[90] Human Rights Watch interviews with two witnesses, names withheld, March 15, 2004.

[91] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[92] ibid.

[93] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[94]Human Rights Watch interviews with four witnesses, names withheld, March 15, 2004.

[95] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 13, 2004.

[96] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 13, 2004.

[97] Human Rights Watch interviews, name withheld, March 16, 2004.

[98] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 8, 2004.

[99] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 8, 2004.

[100] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 8, 2004.

[101] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 8, 2004.

[102] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 8, 2004.

[103] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 8, 2004.

[104] Human Rights Watch interviews, names withheld, March 15, 2004.

[105] Even though the house is tiny, the two women claim that they did not see the wounded man enter the house because they were busy cooking.The house is very dark and the large earthen storage vats obscure the view in the room.

[106] Human Rights Watch interview, names withheld, March 15, 2004.

[107] One U.S. dollar is equal to seventy-five Nepali Rupees (as of September 28, 2004.)

[108]Human Rights Watch interviews, names withheld, March 15, 2004.

[109] Human Rights Watch interview with Karna Bahadur Rasaili, Kavre District, March 4, 2004.

[110] Human Rights Watch interview with Murali Sunuwar, March 5, 2004.

[111] Ibid.

[112] Human Rights Watch interview with Karna Bahadur Rasaili, March 4, 2004.

[113] Human Rights Watch interview with Putali Chulagain, March 4, 2004.

[114] Human Rights Watch interview with Kedar Prasad Chaulagain, March 4, 2004.

[115] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 12, 2004.

[116] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 12, 2004.

[117] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 12, 2004.

[118] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 12, 2004.

[119] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 9, 2004.

[120] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 9, 2004.

[121] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 9, 2004.

[122] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 9, 2004.

[123] Nepal Bar Association Investigative report on Bhiman, September 5, 2003.

[124] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[125] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[126] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 16, 2004.

[127] ibid.

[128] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 16, 2004.

[129] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 16, 2004.

[130] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 16, 2004.

[131] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[132] Human Rights Watch interview with government official, March 15, 2004.Another witness also saw the three Maoists blindfolded and with their hands tied in the yard, and later heard five or six shots when the soldiers executed the men.

[133] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[134] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[135] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[136] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 11, 2004.

[137] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 11, 2004.

[138] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 13, 2004.

[139] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 13, 2004.

[140] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 13, 2004.

[141]Human Rights Watch interview with six witnesses, names withheld, March 17, 2004.Human Rights Watch has also received corroborative testimony from a Commissioner of the National Human Rights Commission, who was present for the exhumation of the bodies.

[142]Human Rights Watch interview with member of the NHRC, name withheld, Kathmandu, March 4, 2004.

[143] The 2004 edition of the Nepal Human Rights Yearbook lists almost 100 killings committed by the Maoists using brutal methods such as beatings, throat-slitting, and hangings. INSEC Human Rights Yearbook 2004, p. 329.

[144] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 11, 2004.

[145] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 11, 2004.According to one witness Nagendra Shah had initially falsely claimed that he owned an AK-47 when Maoists appeared in the area, in an attempt to prevent the Maoists from attacking him.The Maoists then came to demand the non-existent weapon, and later demanded 700,000 Nepali rupees from Shah, who refused to pay.

[146] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 11, 2004.

[147] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 11, 2004.

[148] Human Rights Watch interviews, names withheld, Kathmandu, March 11, 2004.See [online] http://cpnm.org/new/KrishnaSenOnline/index.htm for information from the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) about Chilawal's murder.

[149] Human Rights Watch interviews, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[150] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 14, 2004.Human Rights Watch was unable to interview Bhuwan Thapa, the surviving brother, because he had left the village and gone into hiding after the killing.

[151] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 16, 2004.

[152] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 16, 2004.

[153] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 14, 2004.

[154] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 14, 2004.

[155] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 17, 2004.

[156]State of the Rights of the Child in Nepal: Nepal 2003, (Nepal: Child Workers in Nepal Concerned Centre (CWIN), 2003).According to CWIN, until January 2004, two hundred and seventy eight children had been killed in the conflict and one hundred and sixty one injured.[online] http://www.cwin-nepal.org/press_room/factsheet/fact_cic.html (retrieved April 1, 2004).

[157]See below, Human Rights Watch interview with Renu Ale; State of the Rights of the Child in Nepal 2003, Child Workers in Nepal Concerned Centre(CWIN), 2003.One Maoist Human Rights Watch talked to said that the Maoists encourage children to spy on their neighbors and discover possible traitors. "Children find out many things because no one pays attention to them," he explained.

[158] Statement published on official Maoist website, August 2003, [online] http://www.cpnm.org/english/statements (retrieved September 27, 2004.)

[159]"Maoists deny charges of using child soldiers", The Sunday Post, April 20, 2003, [online] http://www.kantipuronline.com/archive/kpost/2003-4-20/kp_valnation.htm (retrieved September 27, 2004); "Rebel leader on Nepal's 'last war", CNN Interview, November 14, 2002, [online] http://edition.cnn.com/2002/WORLD/asiapcf/south/11/14/nepal.leader.iv (retrieved September 28, 2004.)

[160] See, for example, "Nepal: A Spiraling Human Rights Crisis," AI ASA 31/016/2002; "Nepal: A Deepening Human Rights Crisis," AI ASA 31/072/2002.Thapa, A Kingdom Under Siege, 162; Gautam, Shobha, Amrit Baskota, and Rita Manchanda, Where There are No Men, (New Delhi: Sage Publications, 2001.)Dr. Gopal Krishna Siwakoti, Executive Director of the International Institute of Human Rights, Environment and Development (INHURED) wrote in 2003 that "there is an evidential fear that children are being deliberately recruited as combatants. This has been made convincing by the fact that dozens of children are becoming victims of the target.The problem is most prevalent in Rukum,Rolpa and Jajarkot, Gorkha, Salyan, Sindhupalchowk, Kavre and Sindhuli districts, although several other districts are being crippled with violence. Most children taking part in armed conflict are found between 14 to 18 years of age, but many are believed to have been recruited from the age of below 15, and the use of even younger children cannot be ruled out."

[161] See remarks of Kamal Shahi of the All Nepal National Independent Students' UnionRevolutionary (ANNISU-R) in "Nepal Maoists to raise 50,000-strong child militia," Indo-Asian News Service, February 2, 2004,

[online] http://www.keralanext.com/news/index.asp?id=27384, (retrieved September 27, 2004.)

[162] "Abduction of Children", UN Office of the Special Representative for Children & Armed Conflict, [online] http://www.un.org/special-rep/children-armed-conflict/English/Abduction.html

[163] ibid.

[164] "Polls on despite Beni clash:Govt," March 23, 2004.[online]www.thehimalayantimes.com/index/.aspname=home.htm (retrieved March 27, 2004.)However, an international human rights officer who investigated the fighting in Beni told Human Rights Watch that there was no evidence of the use of civilians by the Maoists.

[165]See Second and Third Combined periodic national report of Nepal to the CRC, CRC/C/65/Add.3, December 2002, para. 317.

[166] Article 38, Convention on the Rights of the Child, G.A. Resolution 44/25, November 20, 1989, entered into force September 2, 1990.Human Rights Watch takes the position that no one under the age of eighteen should take part in armed conflict.

[167]Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of Non-International Armed Conflicts (Protocol II), June 8, 1977.

[168] Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of

children in armed conflicts, G.A. Res. 54/263, Annex I, 54 U.N. GAOR Supp. (No. 49) at

7, U.N. Doc. A/54/49, Vol. III (2000), entered into force February 12, 2002, art. 1 and 2.

[169] Ibid., art. 4.

[170]"Child soldiers wish for peace, do not want to return to the jungle," Deutsche Presse-Agentur, May 2, 2003.

[171]See, for example, "200 school children abducted in Acchham," December 6, 2003; "150 students abducted", January 27, 2003; "153 students, 5 teachers abducted," February 1, 2004; "65 more students abducted," February 2, 2004; "Over 60 students abducted from Rukum," February 27, 2004; "Maoists abduct 40 students, kill 2 civilians," March 30, 2004; "Maoists abduct over 500 students," April 29, 2004; "over 30 students, teachers abducted in Jumla," May 25, 2004; "500 students, teachers abducted in Jajarkot," June 8, 2004; "Maoists abduct 38 students in Taplejung," June 14, 2004, [online] http://www.nepalnews.com (retrieved September 28, 2004.)

[172] "Abduction of Children", UN Office of the Special Representative for Children & Armed Conflict, [online] http://www.un.org/special-rep/children-armed-conflict/English/Abduction.html (retrieved September 28, 2004.)

[173] ibid.

[174] "WarSchool," Nepali Times, March 11, 2004.

[175] Human Rights Watch interview with a teacher in Banke district, name withheld, March 15, 2004.

[176] See CWIN, Doti Incident: Against the Understanding from State and Non-State Parties on Children Being Zones of Peace, October 15, 2003, [online] http://www.cwin-nepal.org/press_room/pressreleases/doti_incident.htm (retrieved Aptil 10, 2004.)

[177]See, for example, "Maoists abduct 5 dozen teachers in Dadeldhura," April 3, 2004; "Maoists abduct over 60 teachers in Taplejung," April 15, 2004; "Maoists release 700 teachers," May 28, 2004; "Over 80 teachers abducted in Udaypur, Sindhupalchowk," May 31, 2004; "500 teachers abducted in Udaypur," June 4, 2004, [online] http://www.nepalnews.com (retrieved September 28, 2004.)

[178] "An Appeal: Disappearance Name List 2057-2060 Mangsir," National Human Rights Commission, Nepal, December 2003.

[179] Amnesty International, "Nepal: Widespread 'Disappearances' in the context of armed Conflict," October 16, 2003, AI Index ASA 31/045/2003.

[180] Article 14 (6) of the Constitution of the Kingdom of Nepal (1990.)

[181] Human Rights Watch interview with Renu Ale, Royal Nepal Army Club, Kathmandu, March 10, 2004.

[182] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 7, 2004.

[183] Human Rights Watch interview, name withheld, March 7, 2004.

[184] Human Rights Watch interview with Purna Bahadur Sunuwar, March 6, 2004.

[185] E-mail communication, May 6, 2004.

[186] Maoists also abuse journalists: for example, Maoists are responsible for the brutal September 2003, murder of Gyanendra Khadka, a reporter for the government news agency Rastriya Samachar Samiti. For an overview of abuses against journalists in Nepal, see the annual worldwide survey by the Committee to Project Journalists.

[187] Human Rights Watch interview with Sita Ram Baral, Kathmandu, March 11, 2004.

[188] Human Rights Watch interview with Gopi Krishna Thapaliya, Kathmandu, March 11, 2004.

[189] Human Rights Watch interview with Bijaya Khadka, Kathmandu, March 11, 2004

[190] Human Rights Watch interview with Jhum Bahadur Khadga, Kathmandu, March 11, 2004

[191] Majdoor Kisan Party is a left-of-center party whose insignia includes the sickle and hammer common to most communist parties.

[192] Human Rights Watch interview with Goma Devi Shahi, Kohalpur, March 17, 2004.

[193] Human Rights Watch interview, Kohalpur, March 17, 2004.

[194] Human Rights Watch interview with Goma Devi Shahi, Kohalpur, March 17, 2004.

[195] Human Rights Watch interview with S.L. Balmiki and Maili Balmiki, Kohalpur, March 17, 2004.

[196] Human Rights Watch interview with Goma Devi Shahi, Kohlpur VDC, March 17, 2004.

[197] Human Rights Watch interview, March 18, 2004.

[198] Human Rights Watch interview, March 18, 2004.

[199] Human Rights Watch interview, February 12, 2004.

[200] Human Rights Watch interview, March 14, 2004.

[201] Human Rights Watch interview, March 14, 2004.

[202] ibid.

[203] Human Rights Watch interview, March 14, 2004.

[204] See, e.g. David Chandler, Voices from S-21: Terror and History in Pol Pot's Secret Prison (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000); Ben Kiernan, The Pol Pot Regime: Race, Power, and Genocide in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, 1975-79 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2002).

[205] Like the conflict in Nepal, the civil war in Peru was characterized by large-scale human rights abuses committed by both the government security forces and the Shining Path guerrillas, including summary killings and widespread disappearances.See Human Rights Watch, Into the Quagmire: Human Rights and U.S. Policy in Peru (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1991); Peru Under Fire: Human Rights Since the Return to Democracy (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1991); Untold Terror: Violence Against Women in Peru's Armed Conflict (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1992); Human Rights in Peru: One Year After Fujimori's Coup (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1993): Torture and Political Persecution in Peru (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1997).

[206] Human Rights Watch interview with senior U.N. Human Rights Officer, Kathmandu, 3 March 2004.

[207] Celia W. Dugger, "Nepal Says Over 400 Rebels Are Dead After Several Battles," New York Times, May 6, 2002.

[208]United States Department of State, Consular Information Sheet: Nepal.See also, U.S. Embassy in Nepal, Press Release: Designation of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoists) under Executive Order 13224, November 1, 2003 (explaining the rationale for the designation: "For eight years, the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) has committed acts of terrorism that threaten the stability of a government friendly to the U .S. Their actions have added to the escalating death toll while adversely affecting the lives of the citizens of Nepal. Destroying infrastructure, attacking government offices, and intimidating villagers through abductions, torture, and murders, the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) has disrupted normal government operations and economic development efforts throughout the country.")

[209] Human Rights Watch interview with Patricia Mahoney, Nepal, March 8, 2004.

[210] The Pentagon official spoke to Human Rights Watch on condition of anonymity.

[211] U.S. Department of State, Country Reports on Human Rights Practices 2003: Nepal, February 25, 2004, available on the world-wide web at http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2003/27949.htm

[212] "International Solidarity Against Terrorism," Remarks by the U.S. Ambassador to Nepal Michael E. Malinowski at the Foundation of Nepali in America, Nepal Branch, Kathmandu, September 12, 2003.

[213] Human Rights Watch interview with Patricia Mahoney, Kathmandu, March 8, 2004.

[214] Statement by Sir Jeffrey James, United Kingdom Special Representative for Nepal, March 26, 2004.Sir James noted "that the last few months have seen an intensification of the Maoist campaign, involving widespread and severe violations of human rights, including murder, bombings, extortion, forced migration, and intimidation."Sir James acknowledged and welcomed "efforts by the leadership of the security forces to bring about respect and observance of human rights, including moves to investigate some reported violations and to take appropriate action against those found guilty.At the same time, we remain concerned at the continuing evidence of violations by the security forces, including for example reports of extra-judicial killings and disappearances."Ibid.

[215] Capacity Development of the National Human Rights Commission,, NEP/00/010, [online] http://www.nhrc-nepal.org.htm. Accessed September 27, 2004

[216] "E.U. Calls for Establishment of a Multi-Party Government," [online] http://www.nepalnews.com/contents/englishweekly/telegraph.htm, February 4, 2004 (accessed at 27 September 2004)

[217] "EU envoys urge Nepal to improve rights record," Agence France Presse, February 2, 2004.

[218] "Nepali Army Officer to be Court-martialled over Massacre of Maoists," Agence France Presse, March 11, 2004.

[219] Human Rights Watch press release, "Nepal: Without Plan of Action, Rights Pledge Will Fall Flat; Maoists Urged to Sign Similar Commitment; Impartial Monitoring Mechanisms Needed," April 2, 2004; Human Rights Watch letter to Prime Minister of Nepal, "Deepening Human Rights Crisis Following Ban on All Political Gatherings," April 21, 2004.

[220] Human Rights Watch interview with independent defense analyst, name withheld, May 2004.

[221] See, for example, "Nepal's forgotten rebellion," Jane's Foreign Report, October 23, 2003.One U.S. government official contradicted this assessment, asserting that the insurgents are better armed than the RNA.Human Rights Watch telephone interview with a U.S official familiar with Nepal, May 28, 2004.

[222] "Security and Foreign Forces, Nepal,"Jane's Sentinel Security Assessment South Asia, June 4, 2004.This information is derived from records of weapons seized by police in 1999 and December 2003.

[223] ibid.

[224] "India-Nepal discuss how to halt Maoist rebels crossing border," Agence France-Presse, February 2, 2004; "Arms smuggling continues from India to Nepal Maoists," BBC Monitoring South Asia, November 17, 2003.

[225] "Security and Foreign Forces, Nepal," Jane's Sentinel Security Assessment South Asia, June 4, 2004.

[226] ibid.

[227] DCSA, "Foreign Military Sales, Foreign Military Construction Sales and Military Assistance Facts as of September 30, 2003" ("DSCA Facts Book 2003") [online] http://www.dsca.mil/programs/biz-ops/facts_book_2003.pdf; Congressional Budget Justification for FY05 Foreign Operations, February 2004.

[228] Congressional Budget Justification for Foreign Operations (FY02), July 2, 2001. This document and those prepared in other years, cited below, are available as a link from the website of the Federation of American Scientists Arms Sale Monitoring Project: [online] http://www.fas.org/asmp/profiles/aid/aidindex.htm (retrieved May 27, 2004).

[229]U.S. Department of Defense, "DoD News Briefing - ASD PA Clarke and Brig. Gen. Rosa," DoD News Transcript, May 3, 2002.

[230] Congressional Budget Justification for Foreign Operations (FY02), July 2, 2001.

[231] Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DCSA), "Foreign Military Sales, Foreign Military Construction Sales and Military Assistance Facts as of September 30, 2002" (hereafter "DSCA Facts Book 2002") [online] http://www.dsca.osd.mil/programs/Comptroller/2002_facts/fy02_facts_book.pdf.It indicates that total FMF for fiscal year 2002 totaled $22 million, and that payment was waived.In an April 2003, briefing, the State Department spokesperson indicated the administration sought a supplemental appropriation of $20 million of FMF financing.U.S. Embassy Islamabad, "Excerpts: U.S. Working with Nepal to Undermine Insurgents," Press Release, [online] http://usembassy.state.gov/islamabad/wwwh02042402.html (retrieved June 17, 2004).However, another document indicates the supplemental was $12 million: Congressional Budget Justification for FY04 Foreign Operations, February 2003.

[232] "DSCA Facts Book 2002."Only $61,000 of defense articles and services were delivered by the end of the year.

[233] Congressional Budget Justification for FY05 Foreign Operations, February 2004.

[234] Congressional Budget Justification for FY04 Foreign Operations, February 2003.Actual expenditures totaled $4 million: Congressional Budget Justification for FY05 Foreign Operations, February 2004.

[235] Congressional Budget Justification for FY04 Foreign Operations, February 2003.

[236] U.S. Department of State Public Notice 4522, "Determination Pursuant to Section 1(b) of Executive Order 13224 Relating to the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist)," published in the Federal Register, Vol. 68, No. 211, October 31, 2003.

[237] Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), "Excess Defense Articles," [online] http://www.dsca.osd.mil/programs/eda/search.asp (retrieved May 24, 2004.)

[238] Human Rights Watch telephone interview with a U.S. official familiar with Nepal, May 28, 2004.See, also, Christina B. Rocca, Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of South Asia, U.S. Department of State, "U.S. Counterterrorism Policy toward South Asia," Congressional testimony dated October 29, 2003, [online] http://wwwc.house.gov/international_relations/108/rocc1029.htm.The U.S. also has authorized commercial weapons sales to Nepal, as well as sold its weapons directly via the Pentagon.More than $7,000 worth of pistols and revolvers spare parts were approved in fiscal year 2002 for commercial sale by the State Department; the Pentagon, for its part, reported that it sold $1,000 in weapons spares to Nepal that year. U.S. Department of State, "Report Pursuant to Sec. 655 of the Foreign Assistance Act: Direct Commercial Sales Authorizations for Fiscal Year 2002"; U.S. Department of Defense, "Report Pursuant to Sec. 655 of the Foreign Assistance Act: Fiscal Year 2002," [online] http://www.fas.org/asmp/profiles/655-2002/6552002.html (retrieved May 27, 2004.)Commercial sales in fiscal year 2003 included $940,000 in ammunition raw materials. U.S. Department of State, "Report Pursuant to Sec. 655 of the Foreign Assistance Act: Direct Commercial Sales Authorizations for Fiscal Year 2003," [online] http://www.fas.org/asmp/profiles/655-2003/6552003.html (retrieved June 17, 2004.)

[239]U.S. Department of Defense, "Report Pursuant to Sec. 655 of the Foreign Assistance Act: Fiscal Year 2003, [online] http://www.fas.org/asmp/profiles/655-2003/6552003.html (retrieved June 17, 2004.)

[240] Congressional Budget Justification for FY05 Foreign Operations, February 2004. A U.S. official stated that the decline was due to the inability of the RNA to absorb more equipment. Human Rights Watch telephone interview with a U.S. official familiar with Nepal, May 28, 2004.

[241] ibid. According to its manufacturer, the Huey II is "an extremely versatile helicopter" that can be used for utility, assault, evacuation, and troop and supply transport. Bell Helicopter, "Huey II: Homeland Security," [online] http://www.bellhelicopter.textron.com/en/aircraft/commercial/maHLS210.cfm (retrieved May 27, 2004).

[242] Human Rights Watch telephone interview with a U.S. official familiar with Nepal, May 28, 2004.

[243] ibid.

[244] Bell Helicopter, "Huey Two: Homeland Security", [online] http://www.bellhelicopter.textron.com/en/aircraft/commercial/maHLS210.cfm, (retrieved May 27, 2004.)

[245] Human Rights Watch telephone interviews with three U.S. officials in May 2004.

[246] Congressional Budget Justification for FY04 Foreign Operations, February 2003; Congressional Budget Justification for FY05 Foreign Operations, February 2004.

[247] Congressional Budget Justification for FY05 Foreign Operations, February 2004.

[248]Jane's Sentinel Security Assessment South Asia, January 6, 2004.

[249] U.S. Department of Defense and U.S. Department of State, "Foreign Military Training In Fiscal Years 2002 and 2003, Volume 1," Joint Report to Congress, released May 2003, [online] http://www.fas.org/asmp/campaigns/training/FMTR%202003/FMTR2003.htm.

[250] "US, Nepal to hold joint military training exercises," Xinhua News Agency, March 10, 2004.

[251]U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, "Country Reports on Human Rights Practices - 2003: Nepal," February 25, 2004.It added that the U.S. had signed an agreement with the government of Nepal to launch a $250,000 police professionalization program, directed to improve the capacity of the police to manage civil disorder.

[252] Congressional Budget Justification for FY05 Foreign Operations, February 2004.

[253] Human Rights Watch telephone interviews with U.S. officials, May 2004.

[254]U.S. Statutes at Large 114 (2001): 1900A-46, 694.

[255] Human Rights Watch telephone interview with a U.S. official familiar with Nepal, May 28, 2004.U.S. end-use monitoring efforts have been criticized as ineffectual. See, for example, U.S. General Accounting Office (since renamed Government Accountability Office), "Foreign Military Sales: Changes Needed to Correct End Use Monitoring," August 2000, [online] http://www.gao.gov/new.items/ns00208.pdf (retrieved September 27, 2004.)

[256] "Security and Foreign Forces, Nepal," Jane's Sentinel Security Assessment South Asia, June 4, 2004.

[257] Foreign and Commonwealth Office, "Strategic Export Controls Report 2001," July 19, 2002.

[258] Foreign and Commonwealth Office, "Strategic Export Controls Report 2002," July 1, 2003.

[259] Foreign and Commonwealth Office, "Strategic Export Controls Report 2003," June 7, 2004.

[260] Correspondence from James Pfeffer, Policy and Defense Relations, U.K. Ministry of Defense, to Human Rights Watch, July 22, 2004.

[261] Human Rights Watch interview with a FCO official, May 27, 2004.

[262] E.U. Code of Conduct on Arms Exports, adopted June 8, 1998 (endorsed by E.U. associated countries on August 3, 1998), [online] http://europa.eu.int/comm/development/prevention/codecondarmsexp.htm; (retrieved September 27, 2004.)

[263] OSCE Document on Small Arms and Light Weapons, adopted November 24, 2000, [online] http://www.osce.org/docs/english/fsc/2000/decisions/fscew231.htm (retrieved September 13, 2002.)

[264] Information provided by an FCO official, May 27, 2004.

[265] Foreign and Commonwealth Office, "Government Response to the Quad Committee Report on Strategic Export Controls," May 18, 2004.

[266] Agence France-Presse, "Britain to give Nepal two nine-seater planes," December 23, 2003.

[267] ibid.

[268] Correspondence from James Pfeffer, Policy and Defense Relations, U.K. Ministry of Defense, to Human Rights Watch, July 22, 2004

[269] ibid.

[270] Correspondence from James Pfeffer, July 22, 2004.

[271] HRW interview with Home Ministry official (name withheld.)

[272] Interview of Foreign Minister Yashwant Sinha on Nepal TV, December, 12, 2003.

[273] "India to provide arms, help in restoration of peace in Nepal," Agence France-Presse, April 25, 2003.

[274] "Nepal's forgotten rebellion," Jane's Foreign Report, October 23, 2003.

[275] "Procurement Nepal,"Jane's Sentinel Security Assessment South Asia, March 2, 2004.

[276] "Maoist Attack in Nepal Kills 21 Policemen," Reuters, June 15, 2004.

[277] "Nepal's PM to visit India, ask for help against Maoists," Agence France-Presse, November 19, 2003.

[278] "Indian army chief pledges military aid to Nepal," Xinhua News Agency, April 25, 2003.

[279] "Army Organization," Jane's World Armies, December 31, 2003.

[280] ibid.

[281] ibid.

[282] "Belgian FN Herstal Delivers Minimi to Nepal," Belgian News Digest, January 9, 2003.

[283] "Belgium maintains contested arms sale to Nepal," Agence France-Presse, October 15, 2002.

[284] Council of the European Union, "Fifth annual report according to operative provision 8 of the European Union Code of Conduct on Arms Exports," Document 14712/1/03 Rev 1, November 26, 2003, [online] http://register.consilium.eu.int/pdf/en/03/st14/st14712-re01.en03.pdf (retrieved July 28, 2004.)

[285] "EP adopts resolution on the situation in Nepal," European Union Press Releases European Parliament, October 29, 2003.

[286] "Belgium maintains contested arms sale to Nepal," Agence France-Presse, October 15, 2002.

[287] ibid.

[288] Human Rights Watch telephone interview with Belgian officials, June 2004.

[289] "Belgian FN Herstal Delivers Minimi to Nepal," Belgian News Digest, January 9, 2003.

[290] ibid.

[291] "Belgium foreign minister to decide on two sensitive arms export dossiers," BBC Monitoring European, July 4, 2003; Human Rights Watch telephone interview with a Belgian official, June 15, 2004.

[292] Human Rights Watch telephone interview with a Belgian official, June 15, 2004.

[293] "Loi introduisant en droit belge le Code de conduite europen sur les exportations d'armes (Law introducing into Belgian law the EU Code of Conduct on Arms Export)," adopted March 26, 2003, [online] http://www.grip.org/bdg/g2072.html.

[294] ibid, Article 4 (1) 4 (b).

[295] Human Rights Watch telephone interview with Belgian arms researcher, November 2003.

[296] Council of the European Union, "Fifth annual report according to operative provision 8 of the European Union Code of Conduct on Arms Exports," Document 14712/1/03 Rev 1, November 26, 2003, [online] http://register.consilium.eu.int/pdf/en/03/st14/st14712-re01.en03.pdf (Accessed July 28, 2004). Under Operative Provision 2 of the E.U. Code, member states are to provide an explanation if they approve an "essentially similar transaction" that has already been rejected by another country acting under the Code within the previous three years.

[297] Available in the appendix of the document at [online] http://register.consilium.eu.int/pdf/en/03/st14/st14712-re01.en03.pdf

[298] "World Armies Nepal," Jane's World Armies, December 31, 2003.

[299] Amnesty International, "A Catalogue of Failures: G8 Arms Exports and Human Rights Violations," June 2003, p. 61-62.

[300] Jane's World Armies, "World Armies - Nepal" December 31, 2003.

[301] Human Rights Watch telephone interviews with U.S. officials, May 2003.

[302] "Procurement Nepal," Jane's Sentinel Security Assessment South Asia, March 2, 2004.

[303] "World Armies - Nepal" Jane's World Armies, December 31, 2003.

[304] ibid.

Region / Country