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Nepal polls in 6 phases over two months

Kathmandu, Sept 28 (Reuters): Parliamentary elections will begin in Nepal on November 13 and be staggered in six phases over two months in view of the security threat from Maoist rebels vowing to derail the vote, election officials said today.

Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba called elections for November, 18 months ahead of schedule, during a row in May over the extension of a state of emergency introduced to help security forces tackle an increasingly violent insurgency.

Deuba says the election, the fourth since 1991 when Nepal abandoned absolute monarchy and introduced parliamentary democracy, would be a “referendum between peace and terrorism”. The guerrillas have pledged to derail the vote.

The final phase of voting will be on January 10, he said.

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