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AP: Nepali King given 15 days to leave palace
KATMANDU (AP) — Nepal stood on the brink of becoming the world's newest republic Wednesday as an assembly charged with ending 239 years of royal rule prepared to meet amid tight security.
But with the world's last Hindu king still in the pink-hued, 1970s-era concrete palace that dominates central Katmandu, political leaders said he would be given 15 days to leave, stepping back from earlier threats to remove him by force, if necessary.
Getting rid of the king, however, is in many ways the least of the new government's problems, as evidenced by a string of bombings that hit Katmandu this week — all apparently aimed at pro-republic politicians and activists...
...A "republic will be declared tomorrow," said Baburam Bhattarai, the deputy leader of the Maoists, Nepal's former rebels, told The Associated Press after Tuesday's swearing in ceremony. "Once republic is declared, the king will automatically lose his position and place in the palace."
..."We are Nepal now. It is no longer the king's country," said Ram Shrestha, a 26-year-old store clerk. "Tomorrow we will celebrate and he will leave the palace."
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