07/21/2012, 00.00
NEPAL

Maoist militants throw chairs at Nepal prime minister

Kalpit Parajuli
More than 500 former fighters carry out the attack, accusing the party's leadership of corruption and lack of economic transparency. Both the party's chairman and vice chairman are targeted. In an official press release, the party dismisses the incident as a "simple argument," but top leaders remain silent.

Kathmandu (AsiaNews) - More than 500 former Maoist fighters attacked Communist Party Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, his deputy and Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai, throwing chairs and other objects after accusing them of corruption and lack of economic transparency. The attack took place during the 7th plenum meeting of the Communist Party of Nepal (CPN).

The political leaders involved did not release any statement about the incident. However, later in the evening, the CPN issued an official communiqué in which it said that the incident was a "simple argument," denying that any physical attack had taken place.

A few days earlier, Saral Sahayatri Poudel, a former commander in the People's Liberation Army (the Communist party's armed wing), released a report on the financial status of party leaders and officials after they came to power in 2006. In it, he called on the party's leadership to be transparent about their expenses and provide compensation to disabled former fighters.

The party itself has set up two commissions to investigate internal financial irregularities.

As evidence of the CPN's troubled times, six of seven division commanders quit, accusing party Chairman Dahal of conspiring to make some of them the scapegoats for financial irregularities committed by officials close to him.

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