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KATHMANDU, NEPAL, June 3, 2001: Dozens of stories are now appearing in the world press on the assassination of the Nepalese royal family. This New York Times report is one of the more complete. The king, queen and royal family were cremated yesterday. The report reads in part, "The bizarre massacre of most of Nepal's royal family was followed today by the bizarre ascension to the throne of Crown Prince Dipendra, a love- struck young man who, by most accounts, murdered his parents and at least seven other relatives during the family's Friday night meal. Dipendra's suitability to be sovereign is cast in doubt not only by the murderous acts attributed to him but also by the fact that he has fallen into a coma, kept alive by life-support machines. He attempted suicide, shooting himself through the head, soon after committing multiple homicide, authorities here say." The report explains that the dead king's brother, Gnanendra, is serving as regent and expected to be proclaimed king once Dipendra is taken off life support. The report goes on, "By most accounts, the royal family had sat down for its traditional Friday dinner in a banquet hall in the palace. A few dozen people were at the table, including the king and queen and their three adult children. Crown Prince Dipendra, 29, had been upset by his parents' -- and particularly his mother's -- disapproval of his choice for a bride, though the young woman came from one of the nation's leading families. That evening, Dipendra had been drinking, according to several accounts, and he left the table in a fit of anger only to return with at least one -- perhaps two -- semiautomatic weapons. 'Dipendra sprayed the room with bullets, and then he went out and got dressed in military fatigues before coming back to finish up,' said Mr. Dixit, a palace spokesperson. 'He was a gun lover, a hunter and a shooter. He was someone who even tested weapons for the Royal Nepali Army.' According to other accounts, the prince had changed into the military clothing before he fired any shots. Either way, he had locked the doors to the dining hall, the accounts say. No guards or aides were inside at the time. In one account, the prince, upon returning to the hall, carried a handgun. He then moved among the wounded, firing single shots into their heads. Finally, guards entered the hall. In one version, Dipendra attempted suicide, firing a single shot through his temple. In a second version, he briefly escaped to another room before attempting to take his own life." The report describes the cremations: "The king's body, held aloft by bare-chested brahmin priests, was covered to the neck with a saffron cloth. Behind him came the queen -- inside an ornate, covered palanquin -- followed by his Prince Narajin, Princess Shruti and Princess Jayanti Shah. The bodies were taken to the cremation site on the banks of the Bagmati River, near the important Hindu temple of Lord Pashupatinath. Mourners laid flowers on the covered bodies. Priests chanted the final prayers. One of them, with a torch in hand, ceremonially circled the king's body three times. Then he set the flame to the king's pyre."