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London Protest Condemns Zimbabwe Leader


Demonstrators in London have held a protest against Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe and urged other African countries to condemn him.

The protest marks the fifth anniversary of the first rally, called the Zimbabwe Vigil. It has been held outside the Zimbabwean embassy in London every Saturday since October 2002.

Demonstrators chanted and waved banners saying "No Mugabe No."

One of the coordinators of the demonstration (Dumi Tutani) said the protesters are trying to raise awareness of human rights abuses in Zimbabwe.

A member of Britain's Parliament, Kate Hoey, attended the rally and received a petition from the protesters. It urged southern African nations to speak out against the Zimbabwean president and called on European Union countries to suspend aid to southern African nations until human rights conditions in Zimbabwe have improved.

President Mugabe has come under international criticism since 2000, when the government began seizing white-owned commercial farmland.

Rights groups have also denounced Mr. Mugabe's government for a crackdown on opposition leaders, alleged election fraud, and a massive eviction of slum dwellers.

President Robert Mugabe blames his country's woes on Western nations that have frequently criticized his rule and have imposed sanctions against his government.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and AP.

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