Published: August 3, 2017
This is the second of a series of quarterly reports from the Nepal Peace Monitoring Project (PMP). The PMP uses a methodology similar to NepalMonitor.org’s alert and mapping system, with a focus on gathering information on violence and political contestation. The PMP’s goal is to improve our understanding of violence in Nepal to better respond to it and promote peace.
On February 20, the Government of Nepal announced the first local level elections in 20 years, to be held on May 14, 2017. Campaigning, interparty competition, protests, and calls for boycotts led to a marked increase in the number of incidents recorded by PMP in quarter two. Roughly 50 percent of both violent and non-violent incidents recorded, as well as 60 percent of injuries (excluding injuries due to sexual violence), were related to the electoral process. 40 percent of electoral violence incidents involved assaults or clashes, 36 percent involved some form of Improvised Explosive Device (IED) or hoax bomb, and 19 percent of incidents involved vandalism or arson.
Overall incidents peaked in the run-up to and during Election Day of phase I and II on May 14 and June 28 respectively. As the framework for the local elections remained contested, elections in provinces 1, 2, 5 and 7 were postponed and later held in a second phase on June 28. Elections for province 2 were again postponed on June 15 to a third phase scheduled for September 18. Despite the rise in number of incidents and injuries related to the elections, gender based violence (GBV) and personal issues remained the leading cause of fatal violence, as in the previous quarter.1 Overall, PMP recorded 1088 incidents this quarter, 713 of them violent and 375 non-violent. This represents an increase of 44 percent in violent incidents and four percent in non-violent incidents over the previous quarter.