Nepal Maoists' general convention begins after 21 years

Kathmandu, Feb 2 (IANS) Nepal's largest party, the Unified Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist, began its general convention in Hetauda town Saturday - the first since 1992.

The general convention is expected to provide a new political doctrine to the party which has witnessed various phases since its 1992 general convention approved the line of "long-term people's war", reported Xinhua.

"It would be solely disrespect to people, if we say we still need a People's War," said party chairperson Prachanda, quoted by the Kantipur daily.

"We need to make a shift in the changed political scenario. We are now in a peaceful politics. Our first target is to complete a capitalist revolution that will pave the way for a socialist revolution," he said.

"In contemporary politics, our priority is to hold general election in the country by the end of May this year," he added.

There will be 3,500 representatives in the party' general convention, which, according to its leaders, symbolizes the peaceful transition of a violent party into a mainstream party.

While 1,200 police personnel will be mobilized to provide security, some 300,000 people are expected to witness the inauguration ceremony in Hetauda, 100 km from Kathmandu.

"We have completed all the preparations," said Maoist spokesperson Agni Sapkota, adding that the convention will be crucial in charting out a new line for the party.

International dignitaries from China, India and other countries will also participate in the convention, which will have the central leadership elected at the closing session on Sunday.

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