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Ugandan President Holds Final Rally Before Elections


Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni held his final campaign rally Tuesday ahead of Thursday's presidential elections.

Speaking in the capital Kampala before thousands of cheering supporters, Mr. Museveni criticized Western governments and foreign donors for meddling in Uganda's domestic affairs.

Opinion polls have shown Museveni holding a solid lead over opposition leader Kizza Besigye. But he appears to be short of the 50 percent needed to avoid a runoff vote.

The Ugandan president is trying to extend his 20-year hold on power, which critics say has become increasingly dictatorial.

Several of Besigye's rallies have been disrupted by violence, including an incident last week where gunmen killed three of his supporters.

In an interview with VOA, a spokesman for Besigye's Forum for Democratic Change party accused the government of trying to kill the presidential candidate. A government spokesman quickly denied the charge.

Separately, human rights groups have accused Museveni's government of harassing opposition leaders, and are calling on international monitors to prevent any irregularities during Thursday's vote.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.