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Discharge of disqualified combatants begins

Sindhuli, Jan. 6

As the discharge of disqualified Maoist combatants from United Nations monitored cantonments begins, officials report that some minors have already left and others are yet to return to their camps.

The government, United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) and Maoists have agreed to discharge minors, starting from Sindhuli, from Thursday.

"Some minors have already left the cantonment. We also lack complete information about those who are on home leave," Uttam, the official in charge of the second division said.

He informed that a total of 371 combatants were registered as minors at three satellite cantonments and the main cantonment located at Dudhauli.

Minors from Ranibas of Sindhuli, Belsot of Udayapur and Khayarmara of Mahottari gathered at the main cantonment.

"We will find out the exact number of the minors only on Wednesday," he added.

The discharged combatants are asked either to go for vocational training or to pursue higher education.

The international community, including United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and others, are expected to invest for them.

Representatives of the government, Peoples’ Liberation Army and UNMIN are already here for their final preparation. Only 1,662 Maoist combatants will stay at the cantonment after the discharge.

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