New Nepal PM calls for unity, patience
Apr 1, 2007 - 2:11:12 PM

Kathmandu, April 1 - Nepal's new Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala took oath of office Sunday, urging for unity and patience and pledging improved security.

'We stand between success and failure,' the 84-year-old veteran leader said after being sworn in as prime minister of Nepal for the sixth time.

'If we can advance unitedly, we will be able to reach our goal.'

Koirala, who Sunday scripted a new chapter in Nepal's history by beginning a government with former terrorists, the Maoist guerrillas, as partners, asked the rebels to show restraint and respect parliament.

The Maoist legislators had not allowed the house to conduct its sessions twice earlier this week, surrounding the rostrum and shouting slogans, to show their anger at the delay in the formation of the new government.

Tacitly referring to the disruptions, Koirala Sunday said no party should give in to strong feelings and obstruct the proceedings of the house.

'If you do that, we will not be able to reach our target,' he said. 'A PM can do nothing on his own.

Koirala, who also headed the government formed last April after the fall of King Gyanendra's regime, said the country was moving from one system to another and it would take some time to make all the adjustments.

'We must have patience,' he said. 'Patience is the most important thing.

Without patience we wouldn't have reached where we are today.'

Koirala, whose one-year-old government was dogged by accusations and reports of increasing violence, abduction and disruption, said peace and security would be established from 'today'.

However, he also said that it was easy to talk. 'We have to prove it through deeds,' he said.

'When I can't accomplish -, I will admit in public that I can't and step down.'

It was the briefest prime ministerial oath-taking ceremony in Nepal's history, lasting just an hour.

Immediately after the swear-in, Koirala left parliament to travel to New Delhi, where he is scheduled to meet his Indian counterpart, Manmohan Singh, Monday ahead of the 14th SAARC Summit beginning from April 3.

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