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Nepal: Two teenage boys and father

Govinda Damai, 18, was seen by his prison guard being taken away by a group of security personnel on Sunday evening, 26 September 2004. A court had found he was being detained illegally and ordered his release for 26 September.

Jimdar Kewat, 16, and his father Keshu Ram Kewat were meant to be freed on 19 September after a court found they were being held illegally.

Their family and lawyers went to the prison that day but the guard had not yet received the court’s release order. When they returned the next day the prison guard told them a team of police had already come to rearrest the two and had taken them away. The district police office denied knowledge of their detention.

They had previously been arrested in April when soldiers entered their house in the middle of the night, blindfolded them and took them away. They were kept blindfolded for four days and given no access to family, lawyers or doctors.

They said their captors demanded information about the Maoists (the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist)), and beat the father and son with wooden sticks, gave them electric shocks and poured water over their noses to stop them breathing.

Ingrid Massage, Asia Director at Amnesty International, said:

“These are the latest in a string of cases of people being rearrested as soon as they are freed by the courts, often the moment they step out of the courthouse.

“Such rearrests seem to indicate an attempt by the security forces to undermine rulings against them by the courts. In order to stop torture, ‘disappearances’ and other human rights abuses the government must ensure an end to the power of the courts being eroded in this way.”

Amnesty International received information on over 370 cases of “disappearances” in Nepal in the last year - more cases than in the previous five years put together, and more than anywhere else in the world.

Those “disappeared” include teachers, farmers, students, business people, journalists, political activists, Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and Children's rights. The organisation has documented hundreds of cases of extrajudicial executions, thousands of arbitrary arrests and widespread torture by security forces.

There have also been numerous reports of abductions, torture and killings by the Maoists and Amnesty International has frequently called on the Maoist leadership to end these abuses and abide by international humanitarian law.

Amnesty International is calling on the government of Nepal to:

  • Investigate and clarify the fate of the “disappeared”, bring perpetrators to justice and pay compensation to the victims and their families;
  • Ensure that security forces respect the authority of the courts and comply with court orders;
  • Provide Nepal’s National Human Rights Commission with all assistance required to carry out its investigations, including allowing its investigation teams to operate freely and have access to all places of detention.

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