The United States has asked Nepalese political parties to work together to meet the May 28 deadline to draft and finalise the new constitution.

This was conveyed to leaders of the main political parties of Nepal by the Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, Robert Blake, during his meetings with them, the State Department said yesterday.

Mr. Blake, who was on a two-day visit to Nepal, met with Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal, Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Home Minister Bhim Rawal and other leaders.

“He urged them to work together to meet the May 28 constitution drafting deadline, extend the UN Mission in Nepal mandate, and agree on a plan to integrate former Maoist combatants,” the Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, P J Crowley, said.

Earlier Mr. Blake visited Maiti Nepal, an anti-trafficking foundation that was recently awarded a two-year $ 500,000 grant by the United States Department of State.

“He talked to trafficking survivors and commended the head of Maiti Nepal on the valuable work her foundation has achieved,” Crowley said.

Mr. Blake would now travel to Thimphu to attend the SAARC summit from April 28-29, as an observer. He will hold bilateral meetings with regional leaders on the sidelines of the summit.

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