Winds of Change in Nepal?

The following report was published in today’s South Australian newspaper “The Advertiser.”
King renews poll pledge

NEPAL’S embattled King Gyanendra vowed overnight to hold elections in his Himalayan kingdom but gave no firm dates and did not to go beyond previous promises to resolve a raging campaign against his rule.

Political parties leading the movement against the king were quick to reject his offer, suggesting the monarch’s message – broadcast at the stroke of midnight at the start of the Nepali Hindu New Year – was unlikely to defuse violent protests that have killed four people in the past week and wounded hundreds.

“It is our wish that in order to re-energise multi-party democracy there should not be any delay in reactivating all representative bodies through elections,” the king’s message said.

“May the efforts at ensuring sustainable peace and meaningful democracy in the interests of the nation and the people bear fruit during the new year.”

The message was largely a repeat of earlier promises to hold elections by April 2007.

For the full story in “The Advertiser” click here.

My hope for Nepal

I certainly hope that the winds of change are beginning to blow in Nepal. This beautiful country does not deserve to be swept up in more political turmoil. The people can ill afford a civil war. They have been on the brink of a complete breakdown of law and order now for so long, and so many people have died.

I visited Nepal in January of this year. For my experiences there go to the Archives section and read my blog.


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