EU rejoinder regarding press reports on a meeting with Dr. CK Raut, and especially an article published in Republica on 27 January 2015 (’We met Raut on human rights grounds: Envoys’)
EU Ambassadors and Norway wish to clarify the circumstances of the meeting between the Hon’ble Foreign Minister Professor Mahendra Pandey and Heads of Mission, reported in Republica’s 27 January edition.
The meeting took place at the EU’s request. Its aim was to correct the misinterpretation of a recent meeting with Dr. Raut. Strongly refuting allegations that this meeting was part of a plan to destabilise Nepal, Ambassadors stressed their role as longstanding friends and partners in the development of the country as a whole.
They detailed the context of their discussion with Dr. Raut, who had approached them with a petition explaining a number of human rights concerns regarding his arrests. The European Union and Norway are committed to the rule of law and the full respect of the rights to freedom of expression and assembly of all citizens irrespective of their ideology and it is in this context that the discussion with Dr. Raut took place, as explained in full transparency to the Nepalese authorities. In no way should it be interpreted as an endorsement of, or agreement with Dr. Raut’s political agenda or actions.
In the meeting with the Hon’ble Minister, both the Government of Nepal and European Ambassadors agreed that no diplomatic code of conduct had been breached and reiterated their strong commitment to democracy, human rights and to the consolidation of the peace process in Nepal, which the above-mentioned countries have been supporting as the largest development partners.
At no point in time has there been any official or non-official communication about ’diplomatic action’ against the envoys.