Nepal's communists unite to form biggest left party

KATHMANDU: The main group of Nepal’s Maoist former rebels and the liberal Communist UML party merged on Thursday to form the Himalayan republic’s biggest left party in a move likely to upset India but have China rejoicing.
Officials said the two constituents of the ruling coalition had formed the Nepal Communist Party, which now heads the nation’s first majority government in 19 years.

In last year’s general elections, the two parties had formed a rare electoral alliance, defeating the centrist pro-India Nepali Congress party. The two have now come together to form the Nepal Communist Party which is considered to be closer to China and controls 174 seats in the 275 member parliament.

Nepal, a natural buffer between China and India, had 10 government changes after the abolition of monarchy in 2008. Fickle coalitions retarded growth and slowed reconstruction after a devastating earthquake killed 9,000 people in 2015.

Nepal’s PM, K P Sharma Oli, who is also the UML chief and…

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