Amsterdam – A high-level European Union (EU) Troika arrived in Kathmandu on Tuesday 4 October to ascertain the political situation there. The delegation today held talks with leaders of political parties in Nepal in connection with King Gyanendra’s February seizure of power and efforts to restore democracy. The United Kingdom is representing the Presidency of the EU troika and will discuss five main topics while in Nepal: Political turmoil, the Maoist problem, the peace process, the role of the Nepalese king and parliamentary elections.

The EU is one of Nepal’s main donors and is expected to meet with senior government officials and civil society members to collect their suggestions on the current situation. The European Commission today said it had earmarked 6 million euros in aid for victims of the Maoist conflict in Nepal as well as Bhutanese refugees in the country.

Of the total, 4 million euros will help finance health care for about 55,000 people in rural Nepal, particularly women, children and the disabled. This will include supplies of food to about 190,000 vulnerable people. Two million euros will help meet the basic food needs of 105,000 refugees from Bhutan living in seven camps in southern Nepal.

The Commission has provided nearly 16 million euros in humanitarian aid to Nepal since 2001.