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Nepal - Flere og større væbnede sammenstød efter våbenhvilens afslutning

Ceasefire ends, major clashes erupt in Nepal

A World to Win News Service, 16. januar 2006

Efter afslutningen af våbenhvilen slog maoisterne til med "nålestiks-operationer" i og omkring flere af Nepals større byer, deriblandt også flere steder i Kathmandu-Dalen. Disse handlinger var forventet, ikke mindst efter at "kongens tropper" (Royal Nepal Army) allerede i slutningen af december og under maoisternes våbenhvile havde angrebet maoisterne flere steder. Maoisterne viser nu, at de er ved at nærme sig en mere alvorlig fase under kamphandlingerne, de er med deres knibtangs-manøvrer ved at omringe og svække de større byområder efter at have meget store dele af landområderne under direkte eller indirekte kontrol.

The Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) announced the end of its four-month-long unilateral ceasefire 2 January. That same day guerrilla military actions took place throughout the country, including bomb explosions in several cities, including Pokhara and Nepalgunj, and in some places daylight attacks destroying Royal Army vehicles.

These were followed by major armed clashes across a broad swath of Nepal. The most important were in the district of Dhangarhi, western Nepal, 11 January; Chitre Bhanjayang, Syangja district, central Nepal, 12-13 January; and the Kathmandu valley, 14 January.

This last battle was a particularly sharp blow to the monarchical regime. As night fell, the Maoist-led People’s Liberation Army attacked a police post in Thankot on the outskirts of Kathmandu, a key entry point into the capital from the west, and another police station at Dadikot, eight kilometres from Kathamandu, an important entry into the valley from the east. There were also blasts against at least four local government offices in central Kathmandu.

The Maoist KrishnaSen-online news agency said that the police post at Thankot was manned by 35 militarized police. Eleven died in the fighting, and a PLA fighter sustained minor injuries. The rebels seized weapons and military equipment as well. At the Dadikot police installation, of the 17 police, three men, including a police inspector, were killed in battle and one was arrested by the Maoists. Here too, arms and ammunition were seized.

The coordinated surprise attacks shocked the feudal autocrats in Singha Durbar (the official seat of government) and the Royal Palace in Kathmandu. The Nepal News Agency commented, “It could not be known how they could get past another security post at Nagdhunga only a few kilometres away on their way to Thankot.”

In the two-day battle at Chitrya Bhanjayang, the Royal Army lost 22 soldiers, including an officer, and the PLA lost nine fighters. In the Dhangarhi attack, the PLA engaged the Royal Army at several different locations in the area while launching a centralized raid on the district headquarters. The revolutionaries destroyed the offices of the Chief District Officer, the district jail and several other government facilities.

The Maoists had announced a three-month unilateral ceasefire in October and then extended it for another month on December 2. When it was first declared, CPN(M) Chairman Prachanda told the Maoist Janadesh newsweekly “The ceasefire is aimed at creating an atmosphere at the national and international level in favour of a forward-looking political exit, inspiring the seven political parties to come to the co-struggle by aiming their tactical agendas straight forward, reinforcing the struggle of various sectors of civil society, increasing the political pressure on the old state and strengthening public relations by respecting the desires and feelings of the broad masses of people.” At that time he also made it clear that “there is no possibility of a dialogue with the old state, which would be meaningless.” During the ceasefire a 12-point memo of understanding concerning the struggle against the king was signed by the CPN(M) and the seven parliamentary parties.

In his 2 January statement declaring the resumption of combat, CPN(M) Chairman Prachanda called the ceasefire “a responsible initiative” that would give the feudal autocrats a chance to hand over power to the people. “But we urge all to understand the reality on the ground.” he said. “It would be not only impossible but suicidal to extend the cease-fire in the face of the fascistic new activities of the Royal Army, and we humbly appeal to all to raise their voices against this situation.”

Chairman Prachanda explained, “Our forthcoming military actions will be directed only against the autocratic royal power. In the immediate sense, our military actions will target the Royal Army and its stooges, who are about to stage the farce of so-called municipal elections to cover up their autocracy. We also want to repeat that we will assist as far as possible the peaceful movement of the seven political parties.” This was a reference to the February elections against which the parliamentary parties have conducted a protest campaign. The king dissolved the parliament and took all power openly into his own hands last year. His regime banned political activity and all speech that is critical of the government and put parliamentary leaders under house arrest. Exactly how firm the various parties will stand in fighting for an end to the monarchy is not yet clear.

The party chairman continued, “If it becomes possible to form an interim government through a broad national political conference or round-table conference and make the people sovereign through the process of electing a constituent assembly, our party is ready to declare another ceasefire at any time and contribute to that peaceful political process. But we want to repeat our commitment to fight to the end for Nepal and the Nepalese people as long as the feudal autocratic elements like [King] Gyanendra-Paras prevail and the terrorist acts of his military gang the Royal Army continue… In the present context, where the liberation of the Nepalese people is clearly impossible without raising guns against the guns of the feudal autocracy, the only alternative is to create a hurricane of peaceful and armed movements. Hence, our party strongly appeals to all the masses of people to unite in aiming to sweep away the feudal autocratic monarchy forever and for democracy, peace and progress. The right to rebel against feudal atrocity is the greatest human right of the Nepalese people at this time.”

The CPN(M) Central Committee recently adopted a document concluding that the party should launch an offensive whose aims are synthesized in the slogan “Stand on the backbone and hit on the head”. In this metaphor, the state’s “backbone” at present is represented by the major highways and suburbs and “hitting on the head” means striking at the strategic weak link of the enemy in the capital and headquarters. [tekst]

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Opdateret d. 18.1.2006