Hon’ble Minister for Foreign Affairs Mr. Mahendra Bahadur Pandey met with the High Commissioner for Human Rights, H.E. Mr. Zeid Raad Al Hussein within the premises of the Palais des Nations, the venue of the 28th Human Rights Council in Geneva and exchanged views on the situation of human rights in Nepal in broader context of the ongoing constitutional and peace process. The Minister shared how Nepal was committed to the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms of all the citizens with equality, equity and justice. He said that Nepal laid emphasis on the right to development along with civil, political, social, economic and cultural and other rights to reach equitable benefits among the people. Referring to the recent establishment of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Commission on Investigation of Disappeared Persons, he stated that following the functioning of the two commissions the perpetrators of grave violations of human rights would be brought to justice along with addressing the needs of the victims and finally paving way for durable peace and social harmony.
The Human Rights Commissioner said that the OHCHR was ready to provide technical advice and support to Nepal in the transitional justice process in keeping with its tradition of extending support to the peace process, if Nepal felt so. He welcomed the recent establishment of the two transitional justice mechanisms in Nepal and pointed out the importance of the Supreme Court rulings with regard to dealing with amnesty and the issue of victims. He said that Nepal would, in its own capacity, be able to investigate and persecute the gross violators of human rights. He exchanged views on the drafting and promulgation of the new constitution and the centrality of human rights issues in the new constitution. He accepted the invitation extended by the Foreign Minister to visit Nepal in due course of time to view the progress achieved in the field of human rights.
In the same manner, the Foreign Minister had a meeting with the President of the current session of the Human Rights Council, H.E. Mr. Joachim Ruecker this afternoon on the sideline of the Council. Matters related to the importance given by Nepal to the protection and promotion of human rights, promulgation of constitution, the Transitional Justice Mechanisms were discussed during the meeting. Emphasis was laid on the universal, indivisible, interdependent and mutually-reinforcing nature of all human rights and the need to avoid selectivity in the interpretation of all human rights provisions. The measures taken by Nepal over the years to advance human rights situation, and the establishment of Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Commission on Investigation of Disappeared Persons to bring the peace process to a logical conclusion featured prominently during the talks.
Likewise, Hon’ble Mr. Pandey also met the Secretary–General of UNCTAD, H.E. Dr. Mukhisa Kituyi at the Palais des Nations this morning and discussed the development challenges of an LDC and LLDC like Nepal and how international organizations such as UNCTAD can strengthen partnership and cooperation with them to get integrated into the global economy for sharing equitable benefits. The Minister appreciated the role of UNCTAD in providing policy and strategic support to the developing countries through policy research and studies and helping them in the transfer of technology. He conveyed that after the conclusion of the peace process and the promulgation of the constitution, Nepal would enter the development phase for which policy support of UNCTAD in the context of changing world scenario is looked forward to.
The Minister shared with the Secretary-General how efforts were directed to promulgate constitution through the consensus of the political parties and what possible challenges lie ahead. He emphasized the need of developing trade as an engine of growth for Nepal by attracting suitable investments in priority areas of hydropower, infrastructure development, tourism and agriculture, among others, and enhancing the productive capacity of the country. Mr. Kituyi assured that UNCTAD would support Nepal to review its investment policy to bring it closer to the changing reality of the globalized world with a view to make it more effective and beneficial.
During all these meetings, Hon’ble Minister was accompanied by H.E. Mr. Deepak Dhital, Ambassador/Permanent Representative of Nepal in Geneva and other officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Permanent Mission of Nepal in Geneva.
Embassy/Permanent Mission of Nepal
04 March 2014