Royal palace massacre will be probed: Maoist leader

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Kathmandu, Jun 12 (UNI) A day after the departure of former King from the palace to Nagarjuna Palace, senior leader of the CPN (Maoist) Dr Baburam Bhattarai today said that 2001 royal palace massacre should be investigated by an impartial and high-level commission, media reports said.

''Nepalis wanted an investigation into the palace massacre as well as palace property,'' The Himalayan Times quoted Mr Bhattarai as saying.

''It was not necessary to defend himself,'' he said.

''We hope Gyanendra would cooperate with the probe panel since it would also be in his own interest. If he is innocent, the investigation would exonerate him,'' the Maists leader added.

Mr Bhattarai said the government had allowed the deposed king to move for Nagarjuna palace only temporarily in order to facilitate his departure.

Nine members of the royals including then King Birendra and all his family members were murdered at a royal dinner party on June 1, 2001.

The incident was not probed, however a committee of Chief Justice and speaker presented the report saying the murder was carried out by then crown prince Dipendra, who was also killed in the incident.

Former king Gyanendra also said yesterday that he and his family members had no role in the massacre.

UNI XC RJ HT2158

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