Nepal to vote in lo­cal polls for first time in 20 years

New Straits Times - - World -

KATHMANDU: Nepal votes in lo­cal elec­tions to­mor­row for the first time in 20 years, a ma­jor step in the young repub­lic’s dif­fi­cult tran­si­tion to democ­racy more than a decade af­ter the end of its civil war.

The gov­ern­ment hopes the elec­tions, stag­gered over two phases, will lead to a gen­eral elec­tion later in the year.

A re­cent dis­pute be­tween the poor Hi­malayan na­tion’s Maois­tled gov­ern­ment and the head of the supreme court had threat­ened to de­rail vot­ing.

Nepal has suf­fered from years of po­lit­i­cal in­sta­bil­ity since emerg­ing from a decade-long Maoist in­sur­gency that ended in 2006 and the abo­li­tion of the monar­chy two years later.

Its demo­cratic jour­ney took a

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