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Mexican Zapatista Rebels Plan Nationwide Tour

Mexico's armed Zapatista rebels say they plan to take another step towards entering national politics with a nationwide tour to drum up support before next year's elections.

In a statement Thursday, Zapatista leader Subcomandante Marcos said a delegation of members will travel around the country to meet with other leftist organizations in an effort to broaden the group's appeal.

He says the group wants to build a new form of leftist politics and push for a new constitution.

The rebel group issued a statement earlier this week saying most of its members supported the decision to move toward peaceful political activism. President Vicente Fox welcomed the announcement.

Zapatista rebels staged an uprising in 1994 to demand greater rights for Indians and autonomy for the Chiapas region.

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