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Page last updated at 11:21 GMT, Saturday, 23 May 2009 12:21 UK

Church in Nepal hit by explosion

Bloodstained floor at Nepali church
Bloodstains covered the church floor after the bomb attack

Two people have been killed and at least 12 injured in an explosion at a Roman Catholic church in Nepal.

The blast, south of the capital Kathmandu, comes as the country's parliament prepares to elect a new prime minister.

Police cordoned off the area, which was strewn with shattered window panes.

No group has said it carried out the attack but police said they suspected the involvement of a Hindu extremist group, the Nepal Defence Army.

The little known organisation says it wants to restore Nepal's Hindu monarchy.

Police say the explosion took place during a service at the Church of the Assumption in Lalitpur.

One of those killed was a schoolgirl, reports say.

The attack came just hours before parliament prepared to elect a new prime minister following the resignation of the Maoist leader, Prachanda, earlier this month.

He stood down after his attempt to dismiss the army chief was blocked by the president.



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