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From The Nepali Press
Maoist expansion



The Maoists may have reached an understanding with the parties for what they call total democracy but they have not slowed their project of consolidating their military strength. At a meeting in Rukum and Rolpa between Dasain and Tihaar, the central working committee decided to expand the Maoists' three-division army into seven divisions. Before the expansion plan, the three divisions were known as western, central and eastern commands. The western command was led by Prabhakar (Janardan Sharma), the central by Pasang (Nanda Kishore Pun) and the eastern command by Ananta (Barshman Pun). The expansion responds to the fact that the Maoists have been unable to mobilise their armed force at different places at the same time. Until recently, the eastern division had been operating east of Kathmandu, the central division west of Kathmandu and east of Rapti zone and the western division had been covering areas west of Rapti. Although the western and central divisions jointly launched an attack west of the capital some time ago, the western command failed to help its eastern counterpart when a similar attack was made east of the capital. A member of the central advisory committee said the goal is to bring uniformity to all the commands. Each of the original three divisions had 5,000 guerillas. Now the seven divisions will contain 4,000 rebels each. That means an overall increase of 13,000 fighters, a hike the Maoists plan to cover by accelerating their recruiting of youths. The Maoists' expansion comes at a time when the Royal Nepali Army has been recruiting more soldiers in order to increase the number of its divisions to seven.


LATEST ISSUE
638
(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)


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