» » Rights activists say parties afraid of approving Rome Statute

Lalitpur, Dec 20: Human rights activists have said the political parties were nervous they would be dragged into cases and have to face charges if the Rome Statute was ratified.

      Constitution experts, advocates and rights activists speaking in a programme organised by the Informal Sector Services Centre (INSEC) on Monday, argued that the Statute was yet to be ratified by Nepal as those in power were unwilling.

      Senior advocate and lawmaker Radheshyam Adhikari accused the parties of becoming averse to ratifying the Statute as they believed in violence. "The parties are afraid to ratify the Statute because they think that they would be dragged in human rights abuse cases as they believed in violence," he said. He stressed on the implementation of any international laws once they are ratified.

      Attorney General Raman Kumar Shrestha stressed on ratification of the Rome Statute for strengthening the domestic criminal justice system. He also emphasised on the protection of the witnesses. 

"Although it appears to be expensive looking at its practice in different countries, it is essential," he said.

      Chairman of Nepal Law Commission, Madhav Prasad Poudel said the Rome Statute becomes essential when the domestic criminal justice system is weak. He argued that Nepal is ahead in guaranteeing the human rights. "We are ahead in guaranteeing the human rights compared to other countries in South Asia," he observed.

      Constitution expert Dr Surya Dhungel spoke of the need of creating awareness from the local to the political level in favour of ratification of the Rome Statute.

      President of the Accountability Watch Group Charan Prasau and INSEC president Subodh Raj Pyakurel said the political party leaders have the fear that they would be indicted if the human rights laws were strong enough. 

About Suresh Yadav

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