Chinese whispers: Nepal PM KP Sharma Oli, Prachanda call truce after meet with Chinese envoy
Nepal PM KP Sharma Oli and ruling party’s executive chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ have reportedly agreed to put a halt to all activities that could negatively affect the ongoing dialogue.
Amid mounting pressure on embattled Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli to step down, Chinese ambassador Hou Yanqi on July 7 intensified consultations with top leaders of the ruling Nepal Communist Party to save him.
Hou met senior leaders and former prime ministers Madhav Kumar Nepal and Jhala Nath Khanal within the past 48 hours as hectic negotiations for a power-sharing deal were going on between Oli and the dissident group led by ruling party’s executive chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda.’
The political future of 68-year-old Oli, known for his pro-Beijing leanings, is expected to be decided on July 8 during the ruling party’s Standing Committee meeting.
During the 45-minute meeting with Khanal on July 7, How expressed concern over disputes that has surfaced within the ruling party and suggested to work toward resolving the differences.
On July 5, the Chinese ambassador met with senior NCP leader and former prime minister Madhav Kumar Nepal and discussed the current political situation. She also called on President Bidya Devi Bhandari on the same day.
Both Madhav Nepal and Khanal held discussion with the Chinese envoy regarding the latest political situation in the country, aides of the two leaders said, without giving any details.
A number of political party leaders have termed the Chinese envoy’s series of meetings with the ruling party leaders as interference in Nepal’s internal political affairs.
This is not the first time that the Chinese ambassador has intervened in Nepal’s internal affairs at a time of crisis. One-and-a-half months ago, when the NCP’s intra-party feud reached the climax, Hou held separate meetings with President Bhandari, Prime Minister Oli and other senior leaders including NCP’s executive chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ and Madhav Nepal.