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No consensus on key issues of Nepal constitution

Posted on Sep 04 2014 | IANS

Kathmandu, Sep 4 : A meeting of Nepal's major parties, expected to forge consensus on contentious issues coming in the way of framing the country's new constitution, ended without any positive outcome, cross-party leaders said Thursday.

The deadline of July next year set by the Constituent Assembly (CA) stipulates that all parties should settle contentious issues -- mainly forms of governance and federalism -- to pave the way for drafting a new constitution, Xinhua reported.

Considering the deadline, the three major parties were engaged in decisive talks Thursday but failed to yield any positive result. The parties have agreed to hold other rounds of talks Friday to explore a point for a compromise among the parties.

"The three-party meeting failed to make any progress on contentious issues of the new constitution," said Nepali Congress Vice President Ram Chandra Poudel after the meeting.

In the meeting, the parties were divided over the number and demarcation of federal units. Ruling parties Nepali Congress and Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist Leninist) [CPN-UML] said there should not be more than seven provinces, while opposition Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) said there should be more than 10 provinces.

The three-party meet also held talks with CPN-Maoist which boycotted the Nov 19 election contending that CA cannot promulgate a new constitution. However, CPN-Maoist did not agree to join the constitution drafting process as offered by other parties in the CA.

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