Nepal: August 18, 2002


The army is recruiting another 5,000 troops for the war against the Maoist rebels, in addition to the army's current strength of 50,000. In addition, 10,000 former and retired soldiers will be hired on a contract basis to provide security for targets favored by the rebels (telephone towers and other utilities.) The army believes the rebels have 3-4,000 armed and trained members, another 10-15,000 part time members and 150-200,000 active supporters among the civilian population (of 25 million).


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