The seven months of ceasefire and the peace talks were already breaking down. At the military and political levels, there were disagreements with the Maoist terms. The Maoists announced that the government had violated the code of conduct and said they had no option but to shelve talks and break the ceasefire.
Neither side was ready to allow a monitoring committee to inspect whether the code of conduct was being followed or violated. One of the main reasons for the failure of the peace talks is due to the absence of an independent and reliable monitoring mechanism. In the last seven years, 8,000 people died and billions of rupees worth of property was destroyed. Now the government, the Maoists and the people must work to prevent impending disaster.
Prachanda's statement does leave a ray of hope for peace. He stressed that the Maoists abandoned their demand for a people's republic and instead asked to restore people's sovereignty and constituent assembly, but in vain. But such critical negotiations should not have been abandoned in three rounds just because there were doubts about the government's intentions. Moreover, without even considering the possibilities or waiting for the government's consideration and flexibility towards their demands, the Maoists have distanced from the talks, killing the hopes and aspirations of 24 million Nepalis.
The continuity of conflict and a return to violence will turn this country into ashes. By taking up arms, the Maoists will worsen the situation of this country. The power of the gun will increase the killing and destruction, which neither the government nor the Maoist will be able to control. The end of the peace talks has been announced but if both sides realise that peace is the only solution to any problem, there may be a chance for us all.
The government and the Maoists have distanced themselves from the talks, but the role of human rights activists and citizen's society has still not ended. Our responsibility has increased. We can still pressurise both parties not to be a part of the destruction. Before the two sides mobilise their armies, they should re-evaluate the situation again and give peace another chance.