Tag Archives: Nepal

Nepalese Police Arrest 70 in Clash with Maoists

The following article is from the New York Times:

NEW DELHI — Nepalese riot police officers wielding batons and firing canisters of tear gas clashed Sunday with Maoist sympathizers in Katmandu, as the Maoists staged their largest protests since abandoning the government seven months ago.

The violence was a new sign that the stalled peace process was unraveling altogether. It started as Maoists blocked roads into Katmandu, the capital, as part of a three-day general strike called to protest President Ram Baran Yadav and demand a restoration of their political power.

News agencies reported that the police arrested at least 70 people on charges of vandalism, while Maoists said as many as 100 demonstrators were injured.

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Nepal’s Maoists Seize Kathmandu

Maoist leader Pushpa Kamal Dahal waves to the crowd during the inauguration of a new autonomous state in Kathmandu December 16, 2009. Maoist declared the capital Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur districts as the new Newa autonomous state. REUTERS/Shruti Shrestha

The following report is from The Economic Times:

KATHMANDU: Maoists on Wednesday announced the seizure of the Nepalese capital Kathmandu declaring it an autonomous region, after storming into heavily guarded Durbar Square, in a development that could trigger a new political confrontation.

Waving red flags, 5000 militant cadres forced their way into the Durbar Square city centre where their chief Prachanda declared Kathmandu valley as the Newa Autonomous State. The Maoists, who have already announced formation of parallel governments in nine districts and paid little heed to warnings by the Nepali Congress, to desist from such tactics as it may lead to “biggest political and social confrontation”.

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Baburam Bhattarai: On Nepal’s Social Revolution

Maoist leader Dr. Baburam Bhattarai shouts anti-government slogans during a sit in protest in front of the main secretariat Singha Durbar in Kathmandu November 13, 2009. Maoist activists closed all the entrances to the main government secretariat on the second day of their protest against the president's reinstatement of the army chief. REUTERS/Shruti Shrestha

The following interview with Dr. Baburam Bhattarai, a leader of the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), was conducted by members of the World People’s Resistance Movement (Britain & Ireland) who recently spent six weeks on a delegation in Nepal during August and September 2009 :

Nepal: Interview with Baburam Bhattarai

by WPRM (Britain)

WPRM: Thank you for meeting with us today. In your article in The Worker #4 ‘The Political Economy of the People’s War’ you write that “the transformation of one social system into another, or the destruction of the old by the new, always involves force and a revolutionary leap. The People’s War is such a means of eliminating the old by a new force and of taking a leap towards a new and higher social system.”

Why then did the Maoist party enter the peace process and attempt to change society through Constituent Assembly elections?

Baburam Bhattarai: This is a very important question related to the basic tenets of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism (MLM).

The basic motive force of history is the contradiction between the existing level of productive forces and the production relations within society. At a certain stage this contradiction sharpens and there is a break with the old relationship and a leap to the new one. We call this social revolution. That leap necessarily confronts a certain force, because every set of productive relations is backed by a state, and the state means basically the organised force of the army.

To break with the old mode of production and leap into a new one, you have to break all the relations within the state backed by the army. And that inevitably requires the use of force. This is a law of history and a basic principle of MLM which nobody can revise. If you revise or abandon it then you are no longer a Marxist. There is no question of our party ever ending this basic principle.

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Video: Nepal Torch Rally and General Strike

The following is a video of the torch rally and General Strike in response to the killing of Maoist activists by the police.

Maoists Hold General Strike Accross Nepal

The following article is from the bourgeois press service, AFP:

General strike in Nepal over Maoists’ deaths

KATHMANDU — Nepal’s opposition Maoists on Sunday called a nationwide general strike to protest against the deaths of party activists in a clash with police, further raising tensions in the Himalayan nation.

Demonstrators burned tyres on the streets of the capital Kathmandu and set fire to cars and motorbikes, while shops and offices remained shut on Sunday — usually a working day in Nepal.

The Maoists’ action was sparked by the deaths of at least four party supporters in a clash Friday with armed police in the west of the country, where landless people had occupied a large area of government-owned land.

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The Andolan in Kathmandu and the Revolution to Follow

The following article by Gary Leupp is from CounterPunch. Please see his previous article, Nepal: The Tactic of General Insurrection:

“So far,” notes Peter Lee of the Asia Times, “Western media have reported remotely and somewhat uncomprehendingly on the massive demonstrations in Kathmandu led by the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), with a marked lack of interest. This perhaps reflects the shared desire of the Indian, Chinese and Western governments not to inflame the situation with excessive attention and rhetoric.” He refers to the two-day action in the Nepali capital Thursday and Friday.

But those demonstrations should be of enormous interest.  According to AsiaNews, “The second phase of the so-called ‘people’s movement-III’ saw more than 150,000 participants, including former Maoist guerrillas and United Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (UCPM-M) members of parliament and militants, gathered around the  Singha Durbar, Nepal’s official seat of government.”

The Maoists virtually paralyzed the government in a stunning display of power. All the top Maoist leaders marched through the city, some meeting the police at the barricades and breaking through  to assume positions around Singha Durbar where they addressed the huge crowd.

It was overwhelming a peaceful, even festive andolan or mass demonstration, although there were some clashes with police. A senior Maoist leader, Krishna Bahadur Mahara, was among those wounded. He told Agence France-Presse, “We are now giving the government and other parties an opportunity to look into our demands.  The ball is in the government’s court.” The most powerful Maoist figure, former prime minister Prachanda, issued a sharper warning to the regime, giving it a seven-day ultimatum (to November 20) to restore “civilian supremacy” or face a general strike and other strong protests.

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The Tactics of General Insurrection and Protracted People’s War in Nepal

The following article is from Dissident Voice:

Nepal Protest

Nepal: The Tactic of General Insurrection
by Gary Leupp / November 2nd, 2009

[N]ow we are focusing on the mass movement… [N]ow we [can] really practice what we have been preaching. That means the fusion of the strategy of PPW [Protracted People’s War] and the tactic of general insurrection. What we have been doing since 2005 is the path of preparation for general insurrection through our work in the urban areas and our participation in the coalition government.

– Maoist leader Baburam Bhattarai, interview with the Britain-based World People’s Resistance Movement, October 26, 2009

Today (November 1) Nepal’s Maoists initiate, with torch rallies in Kathmandu, a mass movement to bring down the regime. This is the regime that succeeded the one their chair Prachanda headed as prime minister from August 2008 to May 2009–a compromise arrangement, always understood to be temporary and transitional, that collapsed when the Nepali Army refused to take orders from the Maoist prime minister.

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