Thousands march in Nepal protests despite curfew, government threats

[JURIST] Thousands of pro-democracy demonstrators took to the streets in Nepal's capital of Kathmandu Sunday despite a Saturday-imposed curfew [JURIST report] and threats from the government to shoot violators on sight. Scuffles with police, one death, and numerous injuries were reported, as were protests in other cities. The protests are part of a general strike against direct rule by King Gyanendra [official profile] called by Nepal's seven main political parties and backed by the country's Maoist rebels [BBC backgrounder].

Nepal's government says the crackdown [JURIST news archive], which began last week, is necessary because rebels have planned terror attacks. The head of Nepal's Ministry of Information [official website], Shrish Sumshere Rana told the Associated Press, "We are not going to allow massive public gatherings in the city as it has been verified that there is Maoist infiltration." Protest leaders have dismissed the claims. AP has more. eKantipur.com has local coverage.

 

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