Nepal's parliament abolishes the nation's centuries-old monarchy

Nepal's parliament voted Friday in favor of abolishing the centuries-old monarchy and turning this Himalayan nation into a republic. More than two-thirds of parliament voted in favor of amending an interim constitution to end the monarchy after an agreement by the main political parties was reached earlier this week, said Speaker Subash Nembwang. Friday's vote ensures the king will be removed immediately after constituent assembly elections scheduled for mid-April next year. Those elected to the assembly will be charged with rewriting Nepal's constitution. The amendment passed Friday will make Nepal a federal democratic republic and all powers of state will be held by the prime minister, Nembwang said.