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Nepal: ICRC starts visiting detainees

23-12-1998 News Release 98/51

The ICRC has begun visiting   security detainees   arrested in connection with the internal disturbances in certain parts of the Himalayan Kingdom of Nepal.

Visits were conducted between 1 and 16 December in three jails in the Himalayan foothills, in one of the poorest midwestern regions of Nepal. The ICRC registered a total of 99 detainees in Rolpa District Jail in Liwange, Rukum District Jail in Musikot and Dang District Jail in Gorahi, where road conditions are difficult and telecommunications almost nonexistent. Over the coming year, it expects to visit an additional 20 to 30 places of detention.

Following acceptance of an offer of services made by the ICRC to the Nepalese Government on 10 August, the visits were carried out in full compliance with the organization's standard working procedures (which include unimpeded access for ICRC delegates to all places of detention, direct one-on-one meetings with detainees and the possibility of repeating visits according to a timetable drawn up by the ICRC), and with the full cooperation of the Home Ministry in Kathmandu as well as the local administration, the police and jail authorities in the districts involved.

These visits will be followed up by comprehensive reporting to the relevant authorities on the detainees'conditions of detention and treatment.

In the region, the ICRC has also been visiting security detainees in Bhutan since 1992 and in India's Jammu and Kashmir since 1994.

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