Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Nepal at a crossroads

With massive protests overwhelming his rigid controls on the capital Kathmandu, King Gyanendra has announced that the parliament he dissolved in February of 2005 will be reinstated. Protest turned to celebration, but already hopes of a new stable government have been dimmed as the Maoist rebels who control most of the countryside rejected the King's offer.

Even without this setback, the people of Nepal face an enormous challenge:
"Our parties are better at fighting for democracy than making it work" (Kunda Dixit, editor of the Nepali Times).

Garth hears from some of the people he worked with in Nepal, speaking of the tensions, the food shortages, the longing for a better life elsewhere. When he left Nepal, there were plans for him to return in a few months to finalize his project (involving computer software for their credit union system). Now we wait and see.

Nepali news sources:
The Himalayan Times
Kantipur Online
Nepal News

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