INVESTIGATORS given four-day extension for Nepal's royal massacre probe - - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - |

INVESTIGATORS given four-day extension for Nepal's royal massacre probe

KATMANDU, Nepal (AP) _ The king on Sunday gave investigators four more days to complete a probe into Nepal's royal massacre, the radio reported, delaying a much-awaited explanation for the killings that many Nepalese believe were part of a conspiracy.

The investigators, unable to meet a Sunday deadline for the report, asked for the extension and King Gyanendra approved the request, Radio Nepal said.

Gyanendra, who came to power after King Birendra _ his brother _ was slain in the massacre, had promised angry Nepalese that they would get an explanation for the killings, which sparked riots a week ago by thousands of angry mourners. Two people died in the unrest, and police imposed several curfews.

Many Nepalese don't believe the accounts of a witness, and relatives who spoke to other witnesses, that Crown Prince Dipendra gunned down his parents _ the king and queen _ and seven other royals. Dipendra then fatally shot himself, according to the accounts.

Gyanendra's unpopularity and the often clumsy attempts of the palace and the government to manage the scarce information about the royal killings has triggered suspicion among Nepalese about what really happened.

Many suspect that Gyanendra and his son, Paras, were somehow involved in the killings. Paras was at the gathering, but escaped unscathed. The new king was absent.

The palace-appointed investigators, Supreme Court Chief Justice Keshav Prasad Upadhaya and House Speaker Taranath Ranabhat, interviewed four injured survivors for at least five hours Saturday at a heavily guarded army hospital.

The survivors are Gyanendra's wife, Queen Komal; his sister, Princess Shobha Shahi; Gorakh Shumshere, the husband of Birendra's slain daughter; and Ketaki Chester, a distant royal cousin.

The investigators worked until 1 a.m. Sunday and started again five hours later inside the Parliament secretariat, protected by police and military guards.

The motive for the killings remains a mystery. There have been widespread reports of tension between Dipendra and his parents over the woman he wanted to marry. The king and queen considered the prince's girlfriend, Devyani Rana, to be of a lower clan, palace sources said.
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