USAID head Samantha Power (left) holds talks with Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal during her two-day visit to Nepal. (Photo: Nepalkhabar)
The United States has invited Prime Minister of Nepal Pushpa Kamal Dahal alias Prachanda to take part in the Summit for Democracy to be hosted by President Joe Biden in coming March.
Nepal has been urged by the US to participate in the global summit, which is known as Biden's ‘Signature Initiative’ on democracy.
US President Biden had taken the initiative to hold the Summit for Democracy in December 2021 which then Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba had attended virtually.
As a continuation to the summit, Biden is organizing the ‘Summit for Democracy 2023’ on March 29-30. Participants can attend the summit in person as well as virtually.
Victoria Nuland, US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, during her recent visit to Nepal, said that the US expects a high-level participation from Nepal in the upcoming summit during her meetings with Prime Minister Prachanda and Foreign Minister Bimala Rai Paudyal.
Similarly, USAID Administrator Samantha Power took up the matters during the meetings with Prime Minister Dahal and the Foreign Minister Paudyal.
However, Prime Minister Dahal has not officially spoken regarding the country’s participation in the Summit for Democracy.
According to sources close to Prime Minister Dahal, he said that Nepal would remain committed towards democracy and human rights during the meetings with US officials.
The US Secretary of State had earlier informed the Nepal government of the Summit for Democracy-2023, according to officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
“The US Secretary of State through a diplomatic note has informed the Nepal government regarding the Summit for Democracy. We have apprised Prime Minister Dahal of this note. However, we have not received a confirmation regarding the participation in the summit from the prime minister,” an official at the Foreign Ministry told Nepalkhabar.
During a press conference organized in Kathmandu on Wednesday, USAID head Power said Nepal must have been invited to the Summit for Democracy.
“I think, the Nepal government has been invited to the Summit for Democracy. Most of the segments of this summit will be held virtually. Ambassador Dean R. Thompson is certainly informed of it,” said Power asking Thompson who was sitting next to her during the press meet.
Concurring Power, Ambassador Thompson said the Nepal government has been invited to it.
USAID Administrator Power said the US has expected that Nepal’s Prime Minister Dahal will participate in the summit.
“The upcoming summit would be an opportunity for Nepal to update about its commitments for democracy and human rights made during the Summit for Democracy last year and the upcoming steps for consolidating democratic institutes,” said she.
Then Prime Minister Deuba, leading an 11-member delegation, had participated in the Summit for Democracy held in December 2021.
What is Summit for Democracy?
The Summit for Democracy is a global conference that came into existence at the initiation of American President Joe Biden.
Biden had organized the summit with the resolution of fighting the challenges of democracy -- totalitarian and corruption -- in collaboration with the like-minded countries, said the Office of the US President.
During the presidential election campaign, Biden had announced that he would organize a global summit for democracy if he were elected.
Biden also invited Taiwan, China intervened in
A total of 110 democratic countries had been invited to the Summit for Democracy. Nepal, India, Pakistan and Maldives had been invited to the summit from South Asia. But, Pakistan abstained from it.
Even though China was not invited, island Taiwan, which China considers as its integral part, was invited. China intervened in it.
China opposed it. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China stated that only the People's Republic of China is the legal representative of the entire China and said, "There is only China in the world." That is only the People's Republic of China.
Biden is likely to invite Taiwan, this time, too.
It was construed that America invited Taiwan to the conference to further irk rivalry with China. Some analysts took it as a sign that America was going to drop One-China policy.
China and Russia had dubbed Biden’s Summit for Democracy as a part of democratic alliance led by America.
Besides China, countries including Russia and North Korea have also not been invited to the summit. China and Russia have been saying that the democracy as interpreted by America is not acceptable to them.