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Protesters Gather to Criticize Bush Policies


Tens of thousands of people have gathered in the Argentine city of Mar del Plata to protest President Bush's war on Iraq and international economic policies.

Argentine football (soccer) star Diego Maradona, Nobel Peace Prize winner Adolfo Perez Esquivel, and Bolivian presidential candidate Evo Morales attended the demonstrations. Crowds packing the streets near the summit waved banners and shouted slogans, calling Mr. Bush a fascist and a terrorist.

Later, the demonstrators gathered in an outdoor athletic stadium. There Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, an outspoken critic of President Bush, delivered an address in which he vowed to kill President Bush's proposal to establish a hemisphere-wide free trade zone.

The city of Mar del Plata has prepared for possible violence, deploying more than seven thousand security officers and barricading parts of the city where the summit is being held. Merchants took precautions too, boarding up their windows and in some cases shutting down for the duration of the summit.

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