A Collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh

Nepal opposition insists on constitutional change, rejects king democracy pledge

[JURIST] Nepal opposition activists rallied late on Friday in Kathmandu to reject a pledge [JURIST report; proclamation text] made earlier in the day by King Gyanendra [official profile; BBC profile] to immediately restore democracy to the country, under the king's direct rule since February last year. The country's political parties, which Gyanendra had invited to propose candidates [BBC report] for prime minister, turned down the overture saying that the king had failed to declare plans for a new state constitution which would make the monarch a mere figurehead, a concession demanded by most opposition members. Activists also declared the statement insufficient for failing to set a date for the new PM’s election. Some opposition protesters reacted violently to the speech despite an extension until midnight of the 11-hour curfew imposed on Kathmandu, vandalizing a police checkpoint and setting a government office on fire.

More protests are expected in Nepal on Saturday morning. Pro-democracy protests [JURIST news archive] against Gyanendra's seizure of power have wracked the country for 16 days with police firing on protesters [JURIST report] with increasing frequency. AP has more.

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.