KATHMANDU, Feb 27: Minister for Foreign Affairs Pradeep Kumar Gyawali addressed the high-level segment of the 40th session of the UN Human Rights Council on Tuesday.
During his meeting, Gyawali reiterated Nepal’s firm commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights at home, and to constructive engagement with the international community to fulfil the mandate of the Human Rights Council as its member.
Stating that peace and human rights cannot be achieved without attaining inclusive development, the Foreign Minister underscored that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Global Compact on Migration provide wider platforms to advance inclusive human rights agenda everywhere.
He called upon the international community for the faithful implementation of these landmark compacts and other relevant internationally agreed development frameworks as these outcomes are central to the enjoyment of human rights by all.
The foreign minister shared that Nepal represents a uniquely successful case of democratic political transformationinspired by theaspiration of Nepali people to ensureequal rights. Nepal’s commitment to the universal values of human rights is total, he said.
Mentioning that the constitution of Nepal is founded on universally recognised human rights and fundamental freedoms, Gyawali informed the Council that Nepal has put in place requisite legal and institutional arrangements to realize those provisions.
"The year 2018 essentially remained a year of human rights law making. And, Nepal accomplished the task of enacting total 16 legislations for the implementation of all fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution," he said.
He said that Nepal was one of the pioneering countries to mainstreaming human rights agendas into national policies and plans through Human Rights National Action Plan.
Earlier on Tuesday, the foreign minister participated as a panellist in a high-level panel on the question of death penalty.
Addressing the panel, Gyawali said that Nepal considers the right to life as sacred and inviolable, and a basis for all human rights, and affirmed Nepal’sconscious choice to go for complete abolition of death penalty.
"There are no empirical studies done that death penalty reduces crime. Physical elimination is not an answer. Instead we need to fight the root causes of crime which might be poverty, deprivation, destitution, and marginalization," said the foreign minister.
On the sidelines, Gyawali held a bilateral meeting Minister for Foreign Affairs of Malaysia Dato' Saifuddin Bin Abdullah.
The two ministers exchanged views on issues of bilateral interests, including the matters pertaining to Nepali workers in Malaysia and called for greater participation from Malaysia at Nepal Investment Summit being held in Kathmandu in March, according to a press release issued by the Nepal's Permanent Mission to Geneva.
The foreign minister held the meeting with ILO Director-General Guy Ryder and discussed the importance of decent work agenda and ILO centenary events.
The foreign minister also attended a diplomatic reception hosted by Ambassador of Nepal to Geneva Deepak Dhital.