AM inistry of Peace in Nepal by J7G2UPN

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									                         A Ministry of Peace in Nepal

                                        Background
        On November 21st, 2006 the government of Nepal signed a peace accord with the
United Communist Party of Nepal. Over the course of the decade over 12,000 people
were killed in the clashes between the government and the Communist insurgency. As a
result of the conflict the government understood that to move forward from the conflict
and its destruction it was crucial to address the root cause of the violence. To achieve this
they created a Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction. A crucial piece of the
Comprehensive Peace Accord between the Government of Nepal and the United
Communist Party of Nepal was the creation of Nepal Peace Trust Fund (NPTF), which
would fund the reconstruction and peace efforts under the Ministry of Peace. As a
government agency the Ministry of Peace and Reconciliation took on the role of
rebuilding the country and reconciling the damage that was done through the time from
1996-2006.

                                  Existing Conditions
       Under the mandate for a Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction (MoPR) the
Ministry is given the task to oversee and manage the reconstruction efforts in the
country. Specifically the Mandate gives the MoPR the responsibility for the
“Formulation implementation, monitoring and evaluation of immediate and long-term
policies, strategies, plans and programs for the establishment of peace, conflict
management and reconstruction of physical infrastructures damaged due to conflict”1
In this regard the MoPR of Nepal has become the most advanced government agency of
peace in the world in terms of direct responsibility. While other countries have
approached post conflict reconstruction and reconciliation through truth commissions
and criminal courts Nepal has opted to incorporate its efforts at reconciliation and
reconstruction directly into the government, and has given the Ministry the support and
Mandate it needs to achieve this goal.

       As of May, 2010 the NPTF continues to carry out programs in the following
areas:
    o The rehabilitation of the internally displaced persons (IDPs),
    o
    o
    o
    o                 he peace building process,
    o
    o Mine actions; and
    o Reconstruction of public sector infrastructure damaged during the conflict.

In accordance to its mandate the MoPR has been working tightly with the Nepalese
Military to address many of the issues that face the country as it rebuilds from the
1
 Mandate for Minisry of Peace and Reconstruction, http://www.peace.gov.np/mandate-3-
en.html
conflict. In particular the Army and the MoPR have worked to address the problems of
internally displaced people (IDP), as it is estimated that there are 100,000 to 200,000 IDP
in the country. To address this issue the MoPR and the Army have worked to set up
regional rehabilitation centers across the country, which provide material as well as
psychological, and reintegration support for combatants and victims of the conflict.
Furthermore the Army and the MoPR has continued programs to address the issue of
landmines that were placed in rural areas during the war, which pose a huge risk to
farmers and particularly children, to address this issue there has been a joint effort to
educate about the mines and remove the mines.
       Furthermore the MoPR has undertaken an approach of encouraging community
level peace initiatives. In order to achieve this the Ministry has initiated Municipality and
Village Development Committee Level Peace Committees (MVLPC’s), which serve as
local government branches to carry out the programs of rehabilitation, reconstruction, and
reconciliation. By addressing peace at a local level the MoPR is attempting to ensure that
its programs are reaching every citizen and that the country is working to return to a state
of peace at the very basis of society.2

                                            Rationale
       In comparison to the developed countries in which campaigns are being waged for
the ministries or departments of peace Nepal has created theirs out of a state of conflict
and the need for reconstruction. However this in itself should prove the need for such
government agencies worldwide, for it is better to have such institutions in place before
conflicts rather than after. Nepal’s MoPR demonstrates the potential for success and the
benefits of such government institutions on many levels.
       The MoPR has been working closely with the Nepalese Military to achieve its
program of reconstruction, rehabilitation, and reconciliation. Traditional thinking views
peace institutions and military institutions as contrasting and opposing forces, but it does
not have to necessarily be this way, Nepal’s reconstruction efforts demonstrate that the
military and peace efforts can work hand in hand. It is essential for militaries to be versed
and trained in peace building rather than just peace keeping and military maneuver.
       As a government institution the MoPR is accountable to the people of Nepal, which
means that its efforts are being monitored and evaluated on a regular basis. If it is found
that its efforts are falling short of set goals and objectives changes can be implemented
rapidly to address the needs and demands of the citizens. The MoPR is required to submit
biannual reports on the status of its projects, including proposed and ongoing projects as
well as budgets and accounts. This information is made available to the public, which
increases the transparency of peace and reconstruction efforts.
       Finally the MoPR serves as the funding source for various reconstruction efforts
from Non-Government and Civil Society efforts. A primary function of a ministry of
peace is to support and coordinate NGO efforts to achieve peace and development, and
the Nepalese MoPR demonstrates the success of such a program. Not only is the MoPR
coordinating its efforts with the Army but it is working closely with NGO’s to achieve its
mission of Peace.

2
 Four Monthly Progress Report No.9 (Mid-January- Mid-May 2010),
http://www.peace.gov.np/uploads/Final%20Draft%20of%20PR9.pdf

								
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