Nepal’s former rebels accept using children in armed insurgency

Under aged maoist combatants

KATHMANDU: Nearly six years after signing the Comprehensive Peace Accord (CPA) and entering into mainstream politics, Nepal’s former rebellion party- UCPN Maoist- has accepted using children during the armed insurgency.

Responding to a writ petition filed at the Supreme Court, Prime Minister and Vice Chairman of the party Dr Baburam Bhattarai accepted using child soldiers to fight with the state force, Nepali daily newspaper Nepali Samacharpatra reported on Sunday.

The writ petition was filed at the court against the government’s decision to provide Rs 2 lakhs to each of the child soldiers and late PLAs disqualified by UNMIN during its initial verification process.

In its written response, the PM has accepted of recruiting child soldiers during the armed insurgency and argued that it was agreed to pay these under-age militia and other disqualified combatants an amount of Rs 2 lakhs.

During the initial week of October, the government had decided to pay off the amount to these combatants. However the decision was challenged by the opposition stating that it was against the CPA.

” Of the 4 thousand and 8 Maoist PLAs disqualified by UNMIN on the basis of underage and of their recruitment date, the government has decided to pay Rs 2 lakhs to each of the combatants disqualified for being under age. The government hopes that the amount will help these ex-combatants to rehabilitate in the society,” the newspaper quoted the PM as stating in the written reply to the court.