Major

Pharm.D. (six years)

Advisor

Bueno de Mesquita, Paul

Advisor Department

Psychology

Date

5-2012

Keywords

transitional justice, truth commission, peace process, Nepal

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Abstract

The purpose of this project is to explore the role of transitional justice mechanisms in directing the peace process, constitution making, and power sharing in Nepal. For more than ten years Nepal experienced violent conflict between the national army and an insurgent political movement led by the Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist. The conflict claimed more than 13,000 lives and was characterized by widespread cases of disappearance. The families of those who were abducted or killed without a trace remain without answers, and the call for a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to document past injustices is strong.

In March 2012, I travelled to Nepal with URI’s Center for Nonviolence and Peace Studies to participate in a cross-cultural nonviolence training with Nepali human rights advocates, social workers and graduate students. I conducted interviews with the participants and administered a survey to discern the underlying social causes of the violence that occurred from 1996-2006 and to identify the social institutions that allowed the violence to continue for so long. The survey aimed to evaluate the role of the international community and to answer the question of how to confront the violent events of the past without threatening national unity.

Here I present a report on the results of this survey, critically evaluate the strengths and limitations of Nepal’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission proposed framework, and attempt to answer how a Truth and Reconciliation Commission will move Nepal towards a more democratic, peaceful, just and equitable nation.