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Table of Contents
Country Reports
Nepal, Landmine Monitor Report 2004

Nepal

Key developments since May 2003: There were no confirmed instances of new mine use by security forces or Maoist rebels during the cease-fire from January to August 2003, but in the wake of renewed fighting since then, both sides are again laying mines or improvised explosive devices in significant numbers. There are no humanitarian demining programs in Nepal, but the Royal Nepalese Army reportedly removed mines in 25 districts in 2003. The first mine risk education activities were initiated by the Nepal Campaign to Ban Landmines in 2003 and 2004.

Key developments since 1999: Government forces and Maoist rebels have used antipersonnel landmines and improvised explosive devises in the internal conflict, which began in 1996. The Maoists have used mines/IEDs much more extensively than security forces. The use of mines and IEDs increased every year from 1999 to 2002, until the cease-fire which lasted from January to August 2003. There were no confirmed instances of new mine use during the cease-fire, but in the wake of renewed fighting since then, both sides are again laying mines or IEDs in significant numbers. All 75 districts are now affected, compared to four in 1999. The government did not officially acknowledge using mines until 2002. The Army has also acknowledged that Nepal produces antipersonnel mines, a previously unknown fact.

Nepal has voted in support of every pro-ban UN General Assembly resolution since 1996, and has participated in many Mine Ban Treaty meetings. Some of Nepal’s most senior officials have expressed support for a ban. Nepalese leaders have since 1999 regularly stated that Nepal is carefully studying accession to the Mine Ban Treaty.

There have been no formal surveys or assessments of the mine situation of Nepal. There are no humanitarian demining programs in Nepal. Mine risk education activities were initiated in 2003 and 2004. Handicap International started a program to support persons with disabilities in 2001. Nepal has taken special measures to aid victims of the conflict and acknowledges that assistance to landmine survivors is an obligation of the state. Since 2000, the number of landmine casualties is increasing although no comprehensive statistics are available.

Mine Ban Policy

The Kingdom of Nepal has not acceded to the Mine Ban Treaty. Nepal has given very mixed signals about its support for a mine ban, its reasons for not acceding to date, and its intention to join the treaty at some point. On the positive side, Nepal has voted in support of every pro-ban UN General Assembly resolution since 1996, including Resolution 58/53 on 8 December 2003 calling for universalization of the Mine Ban Treaty. Nepal attended all the Ottawa Process meetings, the negotiations and the treaty signing ceremony, though only as an observer. While it did not attend the Fifth Meeting of States Parties in Bangkok in September 2003, it participated in the intersessional Standing Committee meetings in February and June 2004. Nepal attended the annual States Parties meetings in 1999, 2000 and 2002, and Standing Committee meetings in September and December 1999.

Some of Nepal’s most senior officials have expressed support for a ban. In January 2000, Nepal’s Prime Minister told Landmine Monitor that he believed the use of antipersonnel mines “should be prohibited. Nepal is steadfast on it.”[1] In January 2001, the Minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs said the government was positive about the treaty, and that the government was making preparations to join.[2] Various political party leaders and Members of Parliament expressed their commitment to ban landmines at a national seminar on landmines in February 2002.[3] In October 2002, Nepal’s Permanent Representative to the UN said, “Opposed to anti-personnel landmines, Nepal has actively participated in the evolution of the convention to control them, and our moral commitment to it remains strong. When the time is ripe, we will be happy to join the rank of those that have the privilege of becoming a party to that very important global treaty.”[4]

Among those expressing support in the past have been former Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuwa,[5] Minister of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Mahanta Thakur,[6] and Minister for Foreign Affairs Arjun Jang Bahadur Singh,[7] as well as representatives of the Social Justice Committee,[8] the Human Rights and Foreign Affairs Committee,[9] the Law and Justice Committee,[10] and the National Human Rights Commission.

In February 2004, in a statement to Mine Ban Treaty States Parties, a Nepalese official said, “We are confident that an endeavor like this Landmines Prohibition Convention is a significant breakthrough in order to achieve regional and global peace.... I recognize that the Convention is consistent with and supportive of national human security and it makes consolidation and betterment of the peace and brotherhood. There is no difference of opinion that this human atrocity, which causes devastating, insidious and barbarous effects, should be eliminated.... Nepal is nearer to the Convention.”[11]

It is also notable that in 2002 the Parliament passed the Terrorist and Destructive Activities (Control and Punishment) Act, which included landmines under the definition of bombs, making the use and possession of landmines by civilians a terrorist act.[12]

Despite these encouraging statements and indicators of support for the mine ban, government forces have used antipersonnel mines in increasing numbers since 1999, as the war with Maoist rebels has expanded, and in 2002 the Army admitted that it is also producing antipersonnel mines.

Nepalese leaders have since 1999 stated that Nepal is carefully studying accession to the Mine Ban Treaty, but no progress ever seems to be made. In June 2004, a Ministry of Defense official told Mine Ban Treaty States Parties, “His Majesty’s Government of Nepal is studying the full implications of this convention at the moment.”[13] It was also reported in June that the government is going to form a committee to study the impact of accession to the Mine Ban Treaty on Nepal’s security situation, and to make recommendations regarding the advantages and disadvantages of joining. The committee will have members of the ministries of defense, home, law and foreign affairs, as well as a representative of the Nepal Campaign to Ban Landmines (NCBL).[14]

There have been many previous statements regarding study of the treaty. In January 2000, Nepal’s Prime Minister said, “I have directed the Foreign Ministry to accelerate the study regarding the signing of the treaty.”[15] In January 2001, the Foreign Minister said, “Although Nepal has been studying various clauses [of the Mine Ban Treaty] before signing it, no considerable progress has yet been reached in this regard.”[16] In February 2002, the Foreign Minister said, “We are in the final stage of the study [of the Mine Ban Treaty] and we are inching closer to the Treaty.”[17] In December 2002, a Foreign Ministry official said, “We have yet to reach the conclusion of the study [of the Mine Ban Treaty]. The study is positively moving forward.... The government has no objection to the treaty principally. We believe that the Nepal government will soon reach the conclusion of the study. The time cannot be specified.”[18]

In February 2004, a Foreign Ministry official told Landmine Monitor that no progress has been made with respect to the Mine Ban Treaty and Nepal was not be in a position to join the Convention.[19] In his June 2004 remarks to States Parties, the Nepalese delegate appeared to stress the increasing difficulties Nepal perceives in joining: “The growing menace of terrorism continues to present a formidable threat to international peace and security. Nepal is not left untouched by this scourge. Because landmines are easy to produce, stockpile, use, and lay on the ground, terrorists have found it extremely easy to spread terror through this means.”[20]

NGO Activities

The Nepal Campaign to Ban Landmines (NCBL), established in 1995, has continued to promote initiatives against the use of landmines by the government and the Maoists and in support of landmine survivors.[21] In this Landmine Monitor reporting period, the NCBL established the Landmine Survivors Network of Nepal, called Hamro Awaz. On 3 December 2003, the International Day of People with Disabilities, the NCBL released the Nepal chapter of the Landmine Monitor Report 2003 in Nepalese language. The NCBL and WODES organized a women's meeting on “Ongoing Violence, The Peace and Harmony is the Need of the Present.” The NCBL also promoted a program on “Ongoing Conflict and Children.”

With the aim of engaging the Maoist rebels on a landmine ban, the NCBL and the Swiss NGO Geneva Call held a meeting with representatives of the government, the Nepalese Congress, the National Human Rights Commission, and the Chief of the Communist Party of Nepal (UML) on 24 February 2004.[22] The NCBL and the Non-State Actors Working Group of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL) conducted a joint mission in June 2003 They met with government leaders and with Maoist leaders, requesting that a ban on landmines be included in the cease-fire Code of Conduct.[23]

Use

Government forces and Maoist rebels have used antipersonnel landmines and improvised explosive devises (IEDs) in the internal conflict, which began in early 1996. The use of mines and IEDs increased every year from 1999 to 2002, until the cease-fire which lasted from 29 January to 26 August 2003. It appears both sides refrained from mine use during that period. However, with the resumption of hostilities has come resumption of mine warfare by both sides.

Use by Government

Landmine Monitor first reported indicators of use of antipersonnel mines by government security forces in 1999. However, government and Army officials did not openly acknowledge such use until 2002. Security forces include the Royal Nepalese Army, the Nepal Police and the Armed Police Force. It appears that there was a great expansion of use of antipersonnel mines by security forces in 2002. Army officials, parliamentarians, political leaders from affected areas, and local populations all confirmed widespread use by security forces. A spokesperson for the Ministry of Home Affairs told Landmine Monitor that security forces used mines in all 75 districts of the country.[24] There were no confirmed instances of new mine use by security forces during the cease-fire from January to August 2003.

In the wake of renewed fighting since August 2003, officials have admitted that security forces are again laying mines. In an interview with Landmine Monitor in February 2004, the spokesperson of the Royal Nepalese Army said, “The landmine is an effective weapon and its use in the present situation should not be taken in another sense. We do not use it desperately and irresponsibly like the Maoists. The security forces have been using mines in a responsible way. All the security posts where the mines are laid are fenced with wire.”[25] The spokesperson has also said, “In a war like this where hundreds of guerrillas try to storm a base manned by a few soldiers, mines are the only defense.”[26] A Major of Royal Nepalese Army stated, “We security forces use imported mines. Before using them we provide training. We do not use them in non-military areas and public places.”[27] A senior Army official told the Himalayan Times, “A mine is the cheapest defense weapon of the army against the Maoists.” He said the Army mapped the mines laid around barracks, claiming, “The mines can be recovered anytime, and villagers near barracks have been notified about the minefield.”[28]

Government forces have laid mines mostly to protect security posts, police stations, army barracks and government offices from Maoist attacks. An Army official told the June 2003 NCBL/ICBL mission that 10,000 antipersonnel mines were planted around 50 military posts. In February 2004, the Army spokesperson told Landmine Monitor that mines are used around more than 50 posts, indicating that while an exact number was not known it could be hundreds.[29] As new security posts have been established in 2004, presumably more landmines have been laid, too. A survey by NCBL members in 25 districts found that all 73 army posts in those districts were mined and fenced with wire.[30] According to police officials, in 2004, mines were used by rebels in 59 of the 75 districts.[31]

In 2003 and 2004, many landmine incidents have occurred near security posts, involving civilians and security personnel, as well as Maoists. A resident of Marke in the Salyan District was injured by a mine laid by the Army when she entered the Army base area of Narsingh Dal Company, Simkhakha to cut grass. She lost her right eye and right leg.[32] A 13-year-old boy was injured by a landmine explosion when he entered the east gate of the Brigade Headquarters.[33] A youth was injured by a mine while walking in an Army training camp.[34] In another landmine incident, a woman was injured while taking rice for her pigs from a dustbin of the police post of Khalanga in the Jajarkot District. The police there use landmines to protect their posts during the night and those mines had previously killed dogs that came to eat the leftover food.[35] A mine exploded due to a technical mistake and injured six army men in the military barrack at Bhorletar in Lamjung District. [36] A soldier working in the Narayan Dal Company, Manthali barrack, was injured by a landmine while crossing the wire fence.[37]

Security forces have laid mines in areas near places frequently used by civilians. An area near Dullang Secondary School, Ghyampesal of Gorakha District was mined to protect the Army barracks established nearby.[38] Near the main entry point of Jumla Airport in Chhina Sanghu and Dansanghu, the security forces reportedly plant mines in the evening and remove them the next morning to protect the airport from Maoist attacks at night.[39] In Bhiman Sindhuli District, the Royal Nepalese Army took about three to four square kilometers of land, previously used by local people for cutting grass and collecting firewood, to build a new barrack. The Army then placed mines around the new barrack and fenced it with wire. The army instructed people not to go there, but goats and cows have stepped on the landmines.[40]

While antipersonnel mines have been used in large numbers, it has also been reported that security forces have used antivehicle mines around their posts.[41]

Use by Rebels

Maoist rebels used homemade mines (also known as Improvised Explosive Devices, or IEDs) in relatively small numbers from the outset of conflict in 1996. Rebel use of IEDs increased noticeably every year beginning in 1999, and particularly in late 2001 and 2002. Landmine Monitor reported that four districts were mine-affected in 1999, 37 districts in 2000, 71 districts in 2001, and all 75 districts in 2002. Like government forces, it appears that the Maoists refrained from new mine-laying during the cease-fire in 2003, but resumed once fighting began anew in August. In October 2003, the Maoist leader Prachanda stated in an interview, “The road mining and ambushing have been successful as per the plan.”[42]

According to interviews with local populations conducted by the Nepal Campaign to Ban Landmines, the Maoists have frequently planted landmines in civilian areas, including farmland, roadsides, schools, and playgrounds.[43] A local political leader in Sindhupalanchok District said that the Maoists have laid mines in 50 of the 79 Village Development Committees.[44] Along a seven-kilometer road from Kalikasthan to Betrabati in Rasuwa District, local people pointed out eleven places where landmines had been laid by Maoists.[45] In Khalanga village of Jajarkot District, a woman hit a mine when she was digging for red soil to paint her house; her right arm was injured.[46] In Sima Village in Jajarkot District, the Maoists allegedly laid a mine in the house of a youth who refused to support them. One child was killed, and one child and one adult were injured, when the children of the family found and played with it.[47]

The Maoists use victim-activated mines (pressure and tripwire), command-detonated mines (remote control), and explosive devices with timers.[48] The June 2003 NCBL/ICBL mission was shown photographs and samples of “bucket bombs,” “pipe bombs,” and “pressure-cooker bombs,” that Nepalese Police officials said all had detonators.[49]

Production, Transfer and Stockpiling

Two years ago, Landmine Monitor cited an unconfirmed report that indicated that the government had two small factories that produced antipersonnel mines, as well as grenades and ammunition.[50] In December 2002, an Army spokesperson denied this.[51] However, during the NCBL/ICBL mission in June 2003, an Army official, Brigadier General Kul Bahadur Khadka, stated that Nepal possessed both locally produced and imported antipersonnel mines.[52]

While the size and composition of the antipersonnel stocks held by Nepalese security forces is not known, an Army spokesperson told Landmine Monitor in February 2004 that Nepal imported mines from India, Russia, and China, mostly in the 1980s. He said that the Army uses M14, POMZ-2, and Claymore-type command-detonated mines.[53] It has been reported elsewhere in the media that security forces use landmines of Indian, Russian and Chinese origin, including PMD-6, POMZ, Type-69, and a Claymore-type mine.[54]

The Maoist rebels produce significant quantities of homemade mines (IEDs). According to media, after the resumption of hostilities in 2003, the security forces have seized facilities for manufacturing these mines.[55] In a December 2003 press conference, the Royal Nepalese Army Headquarters said that the Maoists were using self-manufactured booby-traps and that 1,171 detonators had been confiscated from the end of the ceasefire in August to 17 December 2003.[56] The Army has said that most of the explosives used by the Maoists have been looted from the government, in particular from the Department of Roads, but some may have been obtained from outside sources.[57] There have been allegations that the Maoists have received training and weaponry from two Indian-based rebel groups, the Maoist Communist Center and the People’s War Group.[58] However, there are no specific allegations on landmines.

Landmine Problem

There have been no formal surveys or assessments of the mine situation in Nepal. The extent of the landmine problem is not fully known, but it has clearly grown significantly year after year. Landmine Monitor reported that four districts were mine-affected in 1999, 37 districts in 2000, 71 districts in 2001, and all 75 districts in 2002. Since the end of the cease-fire in August 2003, both government forces and rebels have been laying more mines. In 2004, the Army has been building more security posts, and planting more mines to protect them. In Rasuwa District, a landslide swept away landmines laid around the Ramche Army barracks, and the mines became a threat in a wide area.[59]

Increased use of mines by government and rebel forces has had a corresponding socio-economic impact. The danger of mines has hindered movement within the country, but has also contributed to the increase in the number of internally displaced people and refugees. It has also disrupted farming and other economic activity. This is particularly true for the mid-western regions of the country.

The government has been expropriating more land, including agricultural land, to be fenced and mined for military purposes. According to a press article, in Chanak one man saw his land, valued at five million Nepalese rupees (US$71,943),[60] confiscated, then mined and fenced with wire.[61] A former parliamentarian told Landmine Monitor that compensation is not always provided for the expropriated land and expressed concern that people have to move from their land to an unsecured life.[62]

As the conflict has expanded and shifted to new battlegrounds, landmines and other explosive remnants of war in former battle areas are increasingly a threat for local populations.[63] In Baglung District two children were killed when they played with mines found in such an area.[64] In the Sallepakha Village Development Committee of Ramechhap District, villagers will no longer go into an area where they used to collect firewood, leaves and grass due to the danger of mines and UXO left behind after a battle between the Maoists and government forces.[65]

Mine Clearance and Mine Risk Education

There are no humanitarian demining programs in Nepal, but the Royal Nepalese Army endeavors to defuse or destroy mines whenever it encounters them or is informed of mined locations by civilians or captured Maoists. Records of mines defused or destroyed are not available. The NCBL recorded from media reports that the Royal Nepalese Army disposed of or removed mines in 25 districts in 2003.[66] According to a former Parliamentarian, in one incident the Army disregarded the request of civilians to dispose of mines laid by the Maoists, blaming the civilians for assisting the Maoists. A few days later, a schoolboy was killed by a mine.[67] An Army major said that the accident occurred, because people informed the security forces too late.[68]

There were no formal mine risk education activities in Nepal until 2003. In 2003, the NCBL initiated MRE activities and expanded these activities in 2004. As of May 2004, it had provided MRE to 480 people living in the conflict districts of Ramechhap, Dhading, Rukum, Salyan and Sindhupalchok.[69] In May 2004, four radio channels broadcasted the NCBL’s mine risk education messages throughout the month. The NCBL also reports that it conducted MRE during a picnic program for girls from conflict areas and distributed pictorial books and brochures to a wide range of actors in 75 districts.[70] The brochure was field-tested and 10,000 copies were produced.[71] The NGO World Education developed two poster designs and field-tested them in affected areas in 2004.[72]

In 2004, UNICEF began monitoring mine/IED/UXO casualties and brought together different agencies to plan a communication campaign to prevent accidents.[73] UNICEF organized three MRE meetings in March and April 2004 for different target groups. The first meeting was held on 29 March, with participation from various UN agencies, and international and national NGOs, to share information and discuss priorities. The second meeting on 14 April 2004 concentrated on development of materials for production and dissemination.[74] The third meeting took place on 20 April 2004. UNICEF has reported that it is working on three major activities concerning mine action: development of a mine action strategy including an integrated MRE program; development of an advocacy campaign concerning the use of mines and IEDs; and improving the mine safety knowledge of UNICEF staff and counterparts.[75]

The MRE programs have the support of the government and armed forces. In 2003 and 2004, representatives of the security forces expressed the need for more mine risk education and victim assistance programs during different initiatives organized by the NCBL. A police officer stated, “We can work together with NCBL in order to protect the common people from the danger.”[76] On 10 June 2004, a representative of the Ministry of Defense urged the NCBL to organize mine risk education at the community level and in schools.[77]

Landmine Casualties

There is no official mechanism for collecting data on mine casualties, and no official information is publicly available on conflict-related casualties as this is considered a “sensitive issue.”[78] Some limited information gives an indication of the scope of the problem. The Dipendra Police Hospital in Kathmandu reportedly treated 73 mine casualties from the security forces in 2003.[79] An analysis of local media reports for November and December 2003 indicate that of 110 conflict-related casualties in the two-month period, 76 resulted from eight antipersonnel or antivehicle landmine incidents; 27 people were killed and 49 injured.[80]

According to information collected by the NCBL in 2003, landmines, improvised explosive devices, other explosive devices, and unexploded ordnance caused 731 casualties, killing 196 people and injuring 535 others; 225 were civilians, including 17 women and 39 children.[81] The NCBL recorded 720 casualties in 2002, 424 in 2001 and 182 in 2000.[82] A review of the NCBL database on conflict-related casualties led Landmine Monitor to estimate that there were 177 civilian casualties to landmines and IEDs in 2002. The Bheri Zonal Hospital reports that about 13 percent of conflict-related casualties treated at the hospital in 2002 were mine casualties.[83]

Mine casualties continue to be reported in 2004. A media analysis for January to June indicates that of 572 conflict-related casualties, 132 resulted from 27 antipersonnel or antivehicle landmine incidents; 45 people were killed and 87 injured.[84]

In the past, landmines have killed and injured Nepalese soldiers participating in the UN Interim Force in Lebanon, and peacekeeping operations in the Balkans. Other Nepalese soldiers have been killed and injured by landmines while serving in foreign armies, such as India and the UK.[85]

Survivor Assistance and Disability Policy and Practice

Nepal has taken special measures to aid victims of the conflict and acknowledges that assistance to landmine survivors is an obligation of the state. Special measures undertaken by the government in the last two years to assist mine casualties include: emergency evacuation after an incident; the provision of free medical and prosthetic treatment; financial, administrative and logistical support to hospitals; and financial assistance of 750,000 Nepalese Rupees (about US$10,000) for security personnel killed in the conflict.[86]

Even with this assistance, mine survivors are reportedly still facing many problems, including a lack of available beds in government hospitals, a lack of physiotherapy and other rehabilitation facilities, poor quality orthopedic devices, and a lack of opportunities for social and economic reintegration. The problems are compounded by the location of facilities away from affected areas, a lack of transportation to reach available facilities, and bureaucratic barriers in government offices.[87]

Eight hospitals provide assistance to mine/IED casualties, including Bheri Zonal Hospital, Bir Hospital, Tribhuvan Teaching Hospital, Dipendra Police Hospital, Birendra Police Hospital, Pokhara Zonal Hospital, B.P. Memorial Hospital, and Patan Hospital.[88] Financial constraints reportedly create difficulties in providing treatment to the injured. Hospitals and health posts in the affected areas are poorly equipped, and often lack medicines and adequately trained staff.[89] In Bheri Zonal Hospital, a Mass Casualty Management Team was established in 2002. However, the zonal and district units do not receive adequate funding and as a result, existing facilities have been cut and survivors are sometimes forced to return home without completing their treatment.[90] The Bir Hospital and Birendra Police Hospital have experienced similar financial difficulties and report that some patients have not received adequate treatment.[91] Tribhuvan Teaching Hospital reports that while there are delays in receiving funds from the government, the conflict-related casualties are properly cared for.[92]

Since 2001, the ICRC has provided first-aid posts and surgical facilities in Kathmandu, Negalpani, Pokhara and Kavre, with medicines and other supplies to treat the war-injured, assisted the Nepal Red Cross to set up first aid services in the districts of Aindhuli, Salyhan and Phyuthan, and supported the ambulance service. The ICRC also conducted war-surgery seminars each year and a seminar on emergency techniques for first aid trainers in government forces in 2003. Publications on first-aid and pre-hospital care were translated into Nepalese.[93] In May 2004, the first conflict-injured amputee was assisted under a new ICRC-supported physical rehabilitation program at the Green Pasture Hospital and Rehabilitation Center in Pokhara. Under the program, the ICRC, in cooperation with the Nepal Red Cross Society, will build on the existing capacity of the center and supply materials, components, equipment, and training for prosthetic technicians to produce artificial limbs for eight to ten conflict-injured amputees each month. The ICRC will also cover the costs of lodging and food during treatment, and transportation to the center.[94]

Other prosthetic facilities are available in Kathmandu, but many mine survivors cannot afford the cost of transport, accommodation and food during the seven days required for fitting.

Handicap International started its activities in Nepal in 2001 and supports 47 local NGOs in 12 districts on disability-related issues to provide rehabilitation to individuals with disabilities and raise awareness and advocate on the rights and needs of persons with disabilities. Two projects are currently being implemented, including a community-based approach to disability in development and the provision of specialized services including physical rehabilitation and improving accessibility to services.[95]

In 2002, the NCBL raised funds for six child mine survivors to support the costs of schooling, medical treatment, prosthetics and crutches. NCBL/WODES is supporting the schooling costs for 115 girls affected by the conflict; some are landmine survivors and some are the children of landmine survivors.

Two mine survivors from Nepal participated in the Raising the Voices training in Geneva in May 2003 and in the Fifth Meeting of States Parties in Bangkok in September 2003. Landmine survivors from six districts participated in the seminar on “Landmines and Disabilities” organized by NCBL on 3 December 2003.

The Nepalese government is currently in the process of developing a national policy on disability.[96]


[1] Interview with Krishna Prasad Bhattarai, Prime Minister, Panchkhal, Kavre, 16 January 2000.
[2] “HMG preparing to sign Ottawa Convention,” The Rising Nepal, 30 January 2001.
[3] Statements made at national seminar on “Emergency and Landmines,” Kathmandu, 7 February 2002.
[4] Statement by Murari Raj Sharma, Permanent Representative of Nepal to the UN, General Debate of the First Committee, UN General Assembly 57th Session, New York, 4 October 2002.
[5] Statement by Sher Bahadur Deuwa, Former Prime Minister, Second National Conference organized by the Nepal Campaign to Ban Landmines, 4 July 1999.
[6] Statement by Mahanta Thakur, Minister of Law and Justice, at “South Asian Landmine Monitor Meeting,” 29 January 2001.
[7] Statement by Arjun Jang Bahadur Singh, State Minister, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, national seminar on “Emergency and Landmines,” 7 February 2002.
[8] Statement by Jeevan Prem Shrestha, Chairman, Social Justice Committee, Upper House, at “Role of Parliamentarian on Banning Landmines,” 1999.
[9] Statement Som Prasad Pandey, Member, Human Rights and Foreign Affairs Committee, House of Representatives, “South Asian Landmine Monitor Meeting,” 29 January 2001; national seminar on “Emergency and Landmines,” 7 February 2002.
[10] Statement Prem Bahadur Singh, Law and Justice Committee, House of Representatives, national seminar organized by NCBL, 11-12 December 2002.
[11] Bhupendra Prasad Poudyal, “Note paper on Convention on the Prohibition of the use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction, 1997,” Geneva, 11 February 2004.
[12] Nepal Ain Sangraha [Collection of Acts], Terrorist and Destructive Activities (Control and Punishment) Act, 2058 (2002).
[13] Statement by Nepal, Standing Committee on the General Status and Operation of the Convention, Geneva, 25 June 2004.
[14] “Nepal moots signing mine-ban treaty,” The Himalayan Times, 15 June 2004. NCBL had requested the formation of such a national committee following discussions with the Ministry of Defense earlier in 2004.
[15] Interview with Prime Minister Krishna Prasad Bhattarai, 16 January 2000.
[16] Interview with Chakra Prasad Bastola, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Pulchok, 30 January 2001.
[17] Statement by Arjun Jung Bahadur Singh, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Kathmandu, 7 February 2002.
[18] Interview with Pushkar Man Singh Rajbhandary, Chief of UN Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kathmandu, 27 December 2002.
[19] Interview with Shrestha, UN Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kathmandu, 26 February 2004.
[20] Statement by Nepal, Standing Committee on the General Status, 25 June 2004.
[21] See the NCBL website, www.nepal.icbl.org .
[22] Participants included Chakra Prasad Bastola, Nepalese Congress; Jhalanath Khanal, Communist Party of Nepal (UML); Padma Ratna Tuladhar, Shiva, National Human Rights Commission; Elizabeth Reusse-Decrey, Geneva Call; and Purna Shova Chitrakar, NCBL.
[23] See Landmine Monitor Report 2003, p. 653.
[24] Interview with Gopendra Bahadur Pandey, Spokesperson, Ministry of Home Affairs, Singhdarbar, Kathmandu, 31 December 2002.
[25] Interview with Col. Deepak Gurung, Spokesperson, Royal Nepalese Army, 14th Brigade Office, Kathmandu, 13 February 2004. The Fourteenth Brigade of the Royal Nepalese Army, based in Kathmandu, is responsible for all tasks related to mines.
[26] Statement by Col. Deepak Gurung, Royal Nepalese Army, in Nepali Times Weekly, 21-27 November 2003.
[27] Statement by Maj. Bhakta Bahadur Karki, Chief of the Barracks, Dhading, at “Landmines/IEDs, Its effect on people and Danger,” 18 April 2004.
[28] “Government to outline defence policy on landmines,” Himalayan Times, 3 February 2004.
[29] Interview with Col. Deepak Gurung, Royal Nepalese Army, 13 February 2004.
[30] Interviews with NCBL members, local leaders and social workers in 25 districts in January and February 2004.
[31] Interview with Dr. Kashi Ram Kunwar, Senior Superintendent of Police, Dipendra Police Hospital, Kathmandu, 2 March 2004.
[32] The Himalaya Times Daily, and Kantipur Daily, 22 March 2003.
[33] Kantipur Daily, 11 October 2003.
[34] Kantipur Daily, 26 July 2003.
[35] Interview with Ratna Kumar Sharma Neupane, former parliamentarian and member of NCBL, Jajarkot, 6 April 2004.
[36] Kantipur Daily, 26 July 2003.
[37] Ibid.
[38] Interview with Shiva Shrestha, local political leader, Gorkha District, 31 January 2004.
[39] Interview with Devilal Thapa, former Parliamentarian and local political leader, Jumla, 3 March 2004.
[40] Interview with Goma Devi Devkota, former Parliamentarian, 28 April 2004.
[41] Himalayan Times, 3 February 2004; Himal, 2-15 December 2003.
[42] Statement by Prachanda, Supreme Command of the Maoists, 21 October 2003, reprinted in various newspapers.
[43] Interviews with local people of Rukum, Salyan, and Ramechhap Districts, February 2004.
[44] Interview with Arun Nepal, local political leader, Sindhupalchok, 7 January 2004.
[45] Interview with Madhav Aryal, businessman, and Ashok Ghimire, social worker, Rasuwa District, 10 January 2004.
[46] Interview with Ratna Prasad Sharma Neupane and Damar Bahadur Singh, 6 April 2004.
[47] Ibid.
[48] Capt. Anup Adhikari, Statement to Interaction Program on Clearance of Landmines, 4 August 2002.
[49] ICBL Non-State Actors Working Group, “Nepal Mission Report,” 8-14 June 2003.
[50] Landmine Monitor Report 2001, p. 564. There has been speculation that mines may be produced at several factories known to produce explosives, ammunition or other weapons, such as those in Swyambhu, Sundarijal, Gatthaghar, and Makawanpur.
[51] Interview with Col. Deepak Gurung, Royal Nepalese Army, 26 December 2002. For an earlier denial, see Landmine Monitor Report 2002, p. 720.
[52] ICBL NSA Working Group Press Statement, Nepal Mission, 15 June 2003. Asked if the production took place at Swyambhu or Sundarijal, he answered no, indicating there was a factory in the area near Army headquarters. Email to Landmine Monitor (HRW) from NCBL, 16 July 2003.
[53] Interview with Col. Deepak Gurung, Royal Nepalese Army, 13 February 2004. See also, quotes from Col. Deepak Gurung in Nepali Times Weekly, 21-27 November 2003.
[54] Nepal National Weekly, Vol. 4, No. 17, 11 April 2004; Nepali Times Weekly, 21-27 November 2004; Himalayan Times, 3 February 2004.
[55] NCBL, “The Growing Threat of landmines in Nepal” (Collection of newspaper articles from January to December 2003).
[56] The Himalayan Times, 18 December 2003.
[57] Interview with Col. Deepak Gurung, Royal Nepalese Army, 26 December 2002.
[58] Statement by Shyam Saran, Ambassador of India, reported in Rajdhani Daily, 21 December 2003; Kantipur Daily, 14 August 2003.
[59] Kantipur Daily, 18 August 2003.
[60] Exchange rate: Nepalese Rupee 1 = US$0.01344, www.oanda.com 24 July 2004.
[61] Kantipur Daily, 28 December 2003.
[62] Interview with Subas Karmacharya, former Member of Parliament, Sindhupalchok, 5 January 2004.
[63] NCBL, “The Growing Threat of landmines in Nepal,” 2003.
[64] Kantipur Daily, 27 April 2004.
[65] Interviews with seven villagers, Ramechhpap, 10 March 2004.
[66] NCBL, “The Growing Threat of landmines in Nepal,” 2003.
[67] Rajendra Prasad Pandey, former Member of Parliament, Dhading, 3 March 2004.
[68] Interview with Maj. Bhakta Bahadur Karki, Dhading, 18 April 2004.
[69] Information provided by Purna Shova, NCBL, Sarajevo, 4 May 2004. See www.nepal.icbl.org.
[70] See www.nepal.icbl.org .
[71] Email to LM from Purna Shova, NCBL, 1 August 2004. In the past, the NCBL has helped to raise awareness of the dangers of mines by distributing picture books and brochures, and conducting regular educational meetings.
[72] UNICEF Nepal, “Draft Minutes of the 5th MRE meeting,” Kathmandu, June 2004.
[73] Email from Reuben McCarthy, MRE Project Officer, UNICEF New York, 10 June 2004.
[74] “Update from UNICEF,” MASG Newsletter, April 2004; email from Reuben McCarthy, UNICEF, 8 July 2004.
[75] “Update from UNICEF,” MASG Newsletter, April 2004, p. 15.
[76] Statement by Rana Bahadur Chanda, Deputy Superintendent of Nepal Police, national seminar on “Landmines and Disability” and Landmine Monitor Release Event, Kathmandu, 3 December 2004.
[77] Statement by Bishnu Datta Upreti, Secretary of the Ministry of Defense, Katmandu, 10 June 2004.
[78] Interview with Biswo Shahi, Police Superintendent, Terrorist Control Division, Police Headquarters, Kathmandu, 2 January 2003; interview with Gopendra Bahadur Pandey, Ministry of Home Affairs, 31 December 2002; interview with Dr. Manohar Shrestha, Director, Bir Hospital, Kathmandu, 23 December 2002.
[79] Interview with Kashi Ram Kunwar, Senior Superintendent of Police, Birendra Police Hospital, Kathmandu, 27 February 2004.
[80] Email from Susan Aitken, Communication Officer, Advocacy and Lifeskills Section, UNICEF Nepal, 7 September 2004. It should be noted that these statistics do not represent the official view of UNICEF.
[81] NCBL collects data from interviews with Members of Parliament, government officials, Army and Police personnel, local political leaders, human rights activists, journalists, media, survivors, local people and other organizations. The totals include casualties caused by bombs, grenades, command-detonated devices, and other weapons not prohibited by the Mine Ban Treaty.
[82] See Landmine Monitor Report 2003, p. 657; Landmine Monitor Report 2001, p. 565.
[83] Interview with Dr. Durga Prashad Pradhan, Director, Bheri Zonal Hospital, Nepaljung, 18 March 2003.
[84] Email from Susan Aitken, UNICEF Nepal, 7 September 2004. Not the official view of UNICEF.
[85] Landmine Monitor Report 2000, pp. 520-521.
[86] Bhupendra Prasad Poudyal, Victim Assistance Program, in “Note paper on Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction, 1997,” prepared but not presented to Standing Committee Meetings, Geneva 11 February 2004.
[87] Interview with ten survivors from Salyan, Rukum, Kavre, Dhading, and Ramechhap, 2 December 2003; NCBL, “The Growing Threat of landmines in Nepal,” 2003.
[88] Landmine Monitor Report 2002, pp. 721-722; email to LM from NCBL 16 July 2003.
[89] The NCBL visited various hospitals and health posts in the affected areas during 2002.
[90] Kantipur, 15 July 2002.
[91] Interview with Dr. Manohar Shrestha, Bir Hospital, 23 December 2002; Statement of Dr. Kashi Ram Kunwar, Medical Director, Birendra Police Hospital, 22 January 2002.
[92] Interview with Dr Mahendra Nepal, Director, Tribhuvan Teaching Hospital, Kathmandu, 27 December 2002.
[93] ICRC, “Annual Report 2003,” Geneva, June 2004, p. 149; “Annual Report 2002,” June 2003, p. 163; “Annual Report 2001,” June 2002, p. 183.
[94] ICRC, “First Patient treated under new physical rehabilitation program,” ICRC News, Issue 04/70, 27 May 2004; Dr C. Oscar Arogadri, Surgeon, ICRC, statement at “On Going Violence, The Peace and Harmony is the Need of the Present,” seminar, Kathmandu, 21 March 2004.
[95] Email from Jean-Betrand Lebrun, Program Director, HI Nepal, 14 September 2004.
[96] Ibid.