Nepalgunj (Nepal), Aug. 19 (Reuters): A third round of peace talks between Nepal’s Maoist rebels and the government ended without agreement today but the two sides said they would meet again to try and end a revolt that has killed thousands.
The rebels, who have been fighting since 1996 to establish communist rule, stuck to their demand for a new assembly to draft a new constitution to define the role of the king, chief government negotiator Prakash Chandra Lohani said. “We think that their demand can be accommodated by amending and reforming the present constitution,” Lohani said in Nepalgunj, 500 km west of Kathmandu, after talks concluded in the nearby rebel-held village of Hapure.
“We had a divergence of views so the present round of talks has ended. We will meet again and the date and the venue for the next meeting will be decided by the facilitators within one week,” Lohani said. A Maoist source reiterated that the two sides would meet again but gave no dates. The third round of talks, which had been stalled since May over rebel demands, began on Sunday.
Kathmandu had agreed on the opening day to include the rebels in an interim government and offered to convene a conference of political parties to look at the conflict.