New Nepalese leader elected at 17th attempt

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The Independent Online

The Nepalese Parliament has elected Jhalanath Khanal, chairman of the ruling Communist Party of Nepal, as its new Prime Minister, seven months after the last government resigned amid sometimes violent protests.

Mr Khanal, 61, was elected in the 17th attempt to find a new prime minister after the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) withdrew its candidate to end the stalemate.

The Maoists – former rebels who laid down their arms – previously controlled the government after winning the most seats in 2008 elections. But in May last year they resigned over the implementation of the peace process that ended the decade-long insurgency.

No candidate was able to secure a majority in the previous 16 votes and the parties had been unable to agree on a coalition government.