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Saturday Marks 43rd Anniversary of MLK Speech


Saturday marked 47 years since U.S. civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC.

On August 28, 1963 an estimated 250,000 people gathered in the U.S. capital for a day of protests and speeches by civil rights leaders calling for racial equality in the nation.

King, a Baptist preacher, spoke at the end of the rally. He told the crowd that segregation and discrimination in America had robbed black people of the rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as promised by the nation's founding fathers.

King said he had a dream; a dream that his four children would one day live in a nation where they would not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

King's speech is credited with mobilizing the American civil rights movement and generating support for the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which sought to end legal segregation in the United States.

The next year, King was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

In April of 1968, he was shot and killed while standing on a hotel room balcony in Memphis, Tennessee.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

Related Video Report by VOA's Chris Simkins

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