May 23, 2005
As many as 10,000 pro-democracy demonstrators defied the heavily armed Security Forces to support the 7-Party Alliance’s ( United Front) call for the complete restoration of democracy and jammed the central Kathmandu market of Ason.
The demonstrator,, carrying party-flags and banners, chanted slogans demanding an end to the Feb.-1 Royal move against democracy and civil liberties, and demanded the immediate release of all political prisoners .
Many of the peaceful but militant protestors ignored the Government warning issued Saturday against any “ anti-Royal slogan shouting” and called not only the restoration of democracy but an end to the feudal Monarchy.
Pro-democracy demonstrations were also held across the country including the population centers of Jabalpur, Pokhara, Biratnagar, and Hetauda. The Unified Marxist Leninist (UML), the 2nd. largest democratic party in Nepal, reported 12 cadre were injured in Hetauda after a police attack and two dozen demonstrators have been reported arrested, but most demonstrations were peaceful.
The Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ) began nation wide actions against the recent regressive media regulations by King Gyanendra.
Black flags were put up on FNJ offices throughout the country and agitations for June were announced.
For publishing anything “objectionable”against the King’s anti-democratic move journalist can be imprisoned and fined up to 500,000 NR ($7,250-US).
The pro-democracy demonstrations are scheduled to continue until “Peoples Power” is restored to Nepal. Against the reality of an estimated 250,000 internally displaced refuges, and the Maoist insurgency which has stepped up it’s “ Peoples War” in the last weeks with bombings of transmission facilities and attacks on Security Forces , the United Front has vowed to settle the insurgency politically and abandoned the failed strategy of the King.
Monday is a National Holiday in Nepal to celebrate the birth of the Buddha who was born in Lumbini, Nepal some 2549 years ago. Although the Nepalese Constitution describes the country as a “Hindu Kingdom”, Hindus and Buddhists alike worship Lord Buddha and celebrate the holiday.
As Lord Buddha’s message of compassion and peace is celebrated, it is hoped by many that the war with the Maoist insurgents will soon end and democracy will be restored.
D. Michael Van De Veer-Freelance Journalist
Contributor to Pacifica’s FREE SPEECH RADIO NEWS
UnitedWeBlog(Voice of Free NEPAL)
Co-Host OUT OF THE BOX KKCR.FM
Reporting Daily from Kathmandu, Nepal
PO BOX:21218 Thamel, Kathmandu, Nepal
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