Nepal victims despair despite new government's pledge over war crimes

3/1/2018

It was shortly before lunch on a January afternoon when rebels stormed a village school in the mountains of central Nepal, dragged headmaster Muktinath Adhikari from the classroom, tied him to a tree trunk, and shot him in the head.

Sixteen years on, the chilling photograph of the 45-year-old science teacher - slumped in front of the tree with his hands bound behind him - still haunts the Himalayan nation.

Captured by a local journalist and republished widely since, it is a painful reminder that, despite the end of the civil war between Maoist fighters and the government in 2006, rights abusers remain free.

And even as a new coalition government - promising peace and prosperity - takes power, victims' families, like Adhikari's son, hold out little hope of justice.

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