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Hundreds of Buddhists protest in Nepal

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July 30, 2013 01:03 PM EST | AP

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KATMANDU, Nepal — Hundreds of Buddhists demonstrated near the main government office in Nepal's capital on Tuesday to protest authorities stopping them from building a shrine in a jungle in the western part of the Himalayan nation.

The protesters, some of them monks, blocked streets around the central secretariat during rush hour, preventing government workers from reaching their offices.

Traffic was stopped for hours in the center of Katmandu. Police in riot gear kept a close watch but did not stop the rally. There were no reports of clashes.

The Buddhists were protesting local authorities stopping the building of the shrine in the protected jungle of Surkhet because they did not have permission to do so.

Buddhists make up about 10 percent of the population in Nepal, which is predominantly Hindu.