Set­ting pri­or­i­ties right

Southasia - - BRIEFINGS -

In its World Re­port 2014, the Hu­man Rights Watch urged the newly-elected Con­stituent As­sem­bly of Nepal to take im­me­di­ate steps to im­ple­ment the 2006 peace agree­ment and pro­vide jus­tice to the vic­tims of se­ri­ous hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions that oc­curred dur­ing the civil war. “The three-year po­lit­i­cal dead­lock be­fore the Novem­ber 2013 elec­tions for a new Con­stituent As­sem­bly has stalled ef­forts to en­act leg­is­la­tion or poli­cies to en­sure pro­tec­tion of rights, in­clud­ing re­forms in flawed ci­ti­zen­ship laws, that have left 2.1 mil­lion people ef­fec­tively state­less,” the re­port states.

“En­sur­ing jus­tice for con­flict-re­lated abuses should be a top pri­or­ity for the new Nepali govern­ment,” said Brad Adams, Asia Di­rec­tor of the Hu­man Rights Watch.

The re­port also men­tioned the rape of a fe­male mi­grant worker re­turn­ing from Saudi Ara­bia in De­cem­ber 2012 by an air­port po­lice con­sta­ble that sparked wide­spread protests. Women’s groups sought a re­view of Nepal’s mi­gra­tion poli­cies, in­clud­ing re­vo­ca­tion of an Au­gust 2012 de­cree ban­ning women un­der 30 from trav­el­ling to the Gulf coun­tries for work. The ban was im­posed to pro­tect Nepali do­mes­tic work­ers from phys­i­cal or sex­ual abuse, but rights groups fear that it will push women to mi­grate through in­for­mal chan­nels and in­crease the risk of abuse.

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