The government is formulating two action plans with an objective to address the woes of those women and children who were externally and internally displaced during the decade-long armed conflict.
The action plans are National Plan of Action for Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Conflict Affected Children, and NPA on United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 and 1820 on women peace and security.
Although the country is in the recovery phase after the armed conflict, social reunion, reintegration and rehabilitation are still a big challenge, said Sumnima Tuladhar Executive Coordinator of Child Workers in Nepal. “There is still stigma and discrimination against children that are directly or indirectly involved in the war. Majority of children during the conflict and in the post-conflict period were and are denied care, education, health service, recreation and other basic services.”
Women and girl children are often victims of sexual violence and exploitation, and, increasingly, girl children are being recruited into fighting forces by many armed forces in the country at present, said Tuladhar.
“National intervention is required for social reintegration of girl survivors of abuse and exploitation with appropriate opportunities for self reliance and economic independence,” said Tuladhar, adding that integrated community-based reintegration programme for children associated with fighting force is essential to address the problem of girl children in a sustainable way and that girls more often are overlooked, even though they are in the greatest need of care and services.
According to CWIN-2007, during the decade-long armed conflict, 475 children lost their lives and among them, 205 were girl children. Several cases of girls being sexually abused during the war also have come into the fore.
As soon as the Cabinet approves the action plans, the country will be able to develop a framework to address rehabilitation and reintegration of conflict-affected children, said Dal Bahadur KC, Under Secretary at the Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction. He added they are trying to provide equal rights to women for their proportional participation in all the peace building processes.
Both NPAs are based on specific guidelines on international conventions on children and women on disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration of all categories of children associated with armed forces and armed groups, added KC.