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Nepal: Elections

Volume 472: debated on Tuesday 4 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what support he plans to provide to assist democratic elections in Nepal. (191602)

We continue to believe that the elections to a Constituent Assembly in Nepal, currently planned for 10 April, are key to sustaining the momentum of the current peace process. It is important that all political parties in Nepal, with the support of the international community including the UK, work to ensure that they are credible, free and fair and that they allow a voice to all marginalised groups. We have maintained our wide-ranging backing for the electoral process, including through co-funding the Election Commission and supporting voter education programmes. In addition, we have provided funding to allow the Carter Centre and Asia Foundation to provide international and local non-governmental organisations to monitor elections. As part of our efforts to encourage wider international support, we have pressed the EU to increase the number of election monitors it will deploy to Nepal. Through the UK’s Global Conflict Prevention Pool, we have recently approved funding for a number of hon. Members to travel to Nepal to take part in an election observation mission.