Millions in Nepal vote for provincial, national elections

KATHMANDU, Nepal (AP) — Millions of people in Nepal are voting in the final phase of elections for members of the national and provincial assemblies.

About 12 million voters in the southern half of the Himalayan nation are voting Thursday.

Police said voting was peaceful. Police, army soldiers and temporary police officers are guarding polling stations and patrolling the streets.

The northern, mountainous part of the nation voted on Nov. 26.

Counting of all the votes is expected to start Friday and take several days.

The vote will elect Nepal's first provincial assemblies, whose members will name the seven states and draft provincial laws.