NATIONAL

Maoists in Nepal favour peace talks

KATHMANDU DEC. 4. In a significant development, the Maoist rebels in Nepal have proposed peace talks with the Nepalese Government and have formed a high-level dialogue committee for the purpose.

The rebels formed the committee after a full meeting of the politburo of the outlawed Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) chaired by its president, Pushpa Kamal Dahal alias Prachanda yesterday, a party statement said. The Maoists also decided to stop targeting development infrastructure and attacks on individuals affiliated with political parties. Ever since the start of their uprising last year, the Maoists have destroyed development infrastructure worth billions of rupees and killed several political workers.

The CPN (M) meeting formed a Central-level talks committee for a ``peaceful, positive and progressive political outlet'' to hold talks with the Government, the statement signed by Prachanda said.

14 killed

Fourteen Maoist rebels were shot dead by the Nepalese security forces in the latest anti-insurgency operations across the country, the Defence Ministry said today.

The guerrillas were gunned down in areas such as Siraha, Terhathum, Sankhuwasabha, Morang, Dang, Pyuthan and Darchula districts, it said in a statement.

The security forces recovered guns, pistols, socket bombs, explosive materials, grenades, bullets and electric wires from the rebels.

PTI

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