Two killed in bomb attack on mosque in Nepal

March 30th, 2008 - 3:57 am ICT by admin  

Kathmandu, March 30 (DPA) Two people were killed and at least two injured in near simultaneous blasts at a mosque in eastern Nepal Saturday evening, the police said. The blasts hit the Chotti mosque in the industrial city of Biratnagar, about 440 km east of the Nepalese capital Kathmandu.

Two unidentified assailants on a motorcycle had hurled three improvised explosive devices into the mosque compound, according to police.

A group calling itself Nepal Defence Army claimed responsibility for the blasts.

Independent Kantipur Television said the group had warned of more attacks until Hinduism was reinstated as the official religion.

The group also said it opposed the elections to choose a constituent assembly scheduled for 10 April and would try to disrupt the voting.

The constituent assembly will rewrite Nepal’s constitution and ratify the interim parliament’s decision to abolish the monarchy.

Enraged mobs attacked a passenger bus and imposed a shut down of the city following the blasts, prompting authorities to impose an indefinite curfew.

The local administration also said it had beefed up security in the city and launched an investigation into the attacks.

The blasts came as Nepalese Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala visited the city.

Nepal was officially declared a secular state following the toppling of King Gyanendra’s government by a mass movement in April 2006.

Nepal, which is predominantly Hindu, with Muslims constituting less than 5 percent of Nepal’s population of 27 million, has never been the scene of religious strife.

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