Nepal: A Taste of Blood

A Taste of Blood

Fearful that his palace might soon be stormed and he could be forced to abdicate, King Birendra Shah of Nepal last week yielded to the demands of angry crowds and agreed to restore multiparty democracy after 30 years of one- man rule. The next day thousands of Nepalis thronged the streets, banging drums, clashing cymbals and smearing one another with the vermilion powder that Hindus use on religious occasions. Negotiations on constitutional reform began between the interim government and newly legal opposition parties.

Some protest leaders were worried, though, that the revolt had ended before ironclad guarantees were extracted from the...

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