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The brief on Monday

Monday, November 23rd, 2009
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Did he, or didn’t he?
Was the Maoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal lying or did the Nepali Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala change his mind? After his visit with Koirala in Singapore last week Dahal had claimed that the ‘unnatural coalition’ ruling the country would collapse soon, suggesting he had made a pact with Koirala to unseat the government. Yesterday, Koirala, who returned from a week-long treatment, said: “I did not talk about an alternative to the incumbent government. I talked about setting up a high level political mechanism as that was the need of the house, and finding a middle path to solve the current political deadlock.” (Kantipur)

Donors worry
The United Nations and the Association of International NGOs have issued a statement saying intimidation and interference from various parties has made it difficult to operate in various parts of the country. They said their staff has suffered from pressure to provide donations, financial and in-kind assistance, and undue interference in tender processes. Robert Piper, UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, said Eastern Nepal, including Eastern Terai, is particularly affected by the threats. (That Kathmandu Post)

Water deal
The Nepal-India water talks concluded yesterday after finalising the working schedule of Pancheswor Multi-purpose Project.  The two parties agreed to form Pancheswor Development Authority-a body to oversee the development of the project. Initial work on the project, which is a key component of the 14-year-old Mahakali Treaty, will start by the end of January. (The Himalayan Times)

Must read:
The goddess beckons: Gadhimai’s gauntlet, Himal Southasian

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