Comments regarding Venezuela by the Nepal Communist Party’s co-chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’, and an apparent reprimand of the remarks by his fellow party leader, and Prime Minister, K P Sharma Oli appear set to snowball into a major feud within the Nepal’s ruling party.
On Wednesday evening, Oli told government-controlled Nepal Television that there was no urgency for Prachanda to make such a statement when “I was abroad, and going to return within hours”. “Such a statement would not have come if I were here,” he added.
On January 25, Prachanda had issued a statement saying the “intrusion” into the internal affairs of Venezuela by the “imperialist US” were not acceptable. Within hours, the US made its objection to the comments clear, forcing Nepal’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs to distance itself from what Prachanda, one of the two chairpersons of the ruling party, said. The ministry said Nepal was in favour of the internal affairs of Venezuela being sorted out by the people of the country without outside interference.
After returning to Nepal, Oli purportedly told US Ambassador Randy Berry that Prachanda’s remarks were a “slip of tongue”.
However, Prachanda responded to the PM’s remarks, saying that what one person says after the party had collectively responded to the Venezuela situation in one voice carried no meaning.