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Ugandan Parliament Approves Referendum on Multi-party Politics

Uganda's parliament has overwhelmingly voted in favor of holding a referendum to decide whether the country should return to multi-party politics.

Two hundred 21 lawmakers voted for the measure Wednesday, while 18 voted against it. The referendum will be held in July.

Political parties in Uganda are allowed to exist, but their activities are severely restricted and candidates for office must run as individuals.

President Yoweri Museveni restricted political parties when he came to power in 1986, claiming they only exacerbate ethnic and religious tensions. However, his government has come under pressure to allow multi-party politics ahead of next year's elections.

Last week, Britain suspended more than nine million dollars in aid to Uganda, saying it is concerned about the slow pace of political reforms there.

Some information for this report provided by AP.