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Nepal rights commission report holds King responsible for protest violence

[JURIST] Nepal's High Level Probe Commission [JURIST report] submitted its final report Monday to the Nepalese government, concluding that King Gyanendra [official profile; BBC profile] and some 200 members of his administration were responsible for the violent response to the democracy protests [JURIST news archive] last April that left 22 dead and more than 5,000 wounded. The commission, formed [JURIST report] by the interim government in Nepal [JURIST news archive] and led by a former supreme court justice, has the authority to interrogate officials, issue warrants, and make recommendations regarding actions which should be taken against rights abusers. The commission's final report does not include recommendations, but Nepalese Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala has promised to "fully implement" the report [NepalNews.com report]. The commission, whose findings were leaked to the media [JURIST report] last week, reasoned that because Gyanendra chaired Nepal's council of ministers, he was legally responsible for the actions of the cabinet. Rights activists are calling for those responsible for the violent crackdown to be prosecuted; Gyanendra has been stripped of most of his powers [JURIST report] since his fall from power in April, including his right to immunity.

Rights groups have also urged Koirala to make the report available to the public [NepalNews.com report], asserting that the government's failure to release the report publicly violates a right to information and also runs contrary to the spirit behind the pro-democracy movement. AP has more.

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