Hundreds detained after Nepal rally

Activists have vowed to continue their campaign to restore democracy in Nepal despite a crackdown on a pro-democracy rally by police who detained hundreds of people and beat protesters with batons, injuring about three dozen.

    Police beat protesters with batons, injuring several

    Late on Tuesday, police detained 529 people, including top political party leaders, in Katmandu after about 6000 people rallied to demand that King relinquish the absolute power he seized in February.

    Most were released on Tuesday night or Wednesday morning, police said.

    "We have not been deterred by the extreme use of force. We held a meeting last night and decided we will continue our street protest,"

     Ram Sharan Mahat of Nepali Congress, the largest political party, said on Wednesday.

    Demands

    The party heads an alliance of Nepal's seven main political parties which are demanding that the king hand power back to an elected government.

    King Gyanendra faces demands
    to relinquish absolute power 

    About three dozen people were hurt, some with head injuries, when police beat them with bamboo batons in an attempt to disperse the crowd in the centre of the capital.

    Police dragged hundreds of protesters to police vans and trucks and drove them to detention centres.
     
    Protesters hurled rocks and bricks at police officers, injuring two.

    One witness said that a radio journalist covering the event was also beaten up by police.

    The rally moved into the city centre despite a government ban on gatherings there.

    Daily rallies

    Protesters broke through police lines, chanting slogans against the royal government.

    Activists have held daily rallies
    in Kathmandu since last week

    "Down with autocracy. We want democracy," the protesters shouted.

    "Give back power to the people."

    Activists have held daily rallies in Katmandu since last week to protest Gyanendra's seizure of power.

    Tuesday's rally was the largest and was led by top opposition politicians.

    The king has said he assumed absolute power to end government corruption and to quell an anti-monarchist communist insurgency, which has claimed more than 11,500 lives in nine years.

    SOURCE: Unspecified


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Explore how your country voted on global issues since 1946, as the world gears up for the 74th UN General Assembly.

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    We dialled more than 35,000 random phone numbers to paint an accurate picture of displacement across South Sudan.

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Meet the man on a mission to take down Cambodia's timber tycoons and expose a rampant illegal cross-border trade.