Nepal

Nepal will hold fourth vote for new PM

Reuters

Nepal's parliament has announced it will hold a fourth poll to elect a new prime minister, after the last election failed to produce a clear winner. The next vote will reportedly take place on 6 August.

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This is five weeks after former prime minister Madhav Kumar Nepal stood down under pressure from the opposition Maoist party, leaving the country without a functioning government.

Maoist leader Pushpa Kamal Dahal, who is also known as Prachanda, and Nepali Congress vice president Ram Chandra Paudel are in the fray for the prime minister post.

Prachanda, which means "the fierce one", won the highest number of votes in Monday’s race, but failed to secure the overall majority needed to form a new government.

The Maoists must now have to try to win over an alliance of smaller parties before voting takes place again on Friday.

Nepal’s leadership vacuum is causing growing concern about the future of the country, which has struggled to recover from a decade-long civil war between Maoist rebels and the state.

The Maoists laid down their arms in 2006, transforming themselves into a political party and winning elections two years later.

They say that as the largest party in parliament they should lead the next government.

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