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Rice visits Britain amid strong protest
www.chinaview.cn 2006-03-31 19:41:58

Rice faces strong anti-war protests at the start of her tour of England's northwest on Friday.(Photo: Xinhua/Reuters)
    LONDON, March 31 (Xinhua) -- The U.S. Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, faced strong anti-war protests at the start of her tour of England's northwest on Friday.

    During the two-day visit as guest of Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, in return for his visit last year to her hometown, Rice is expected to tour Blackburn and Liverpool which have historic links to America's deep south.

    However, anti-war protesters have caused Rice to cancel a planned visit to a mosque in Straw's constituency of Blackburn, with warnings of protests from a group of Muslims, including members of the Stop the War Coalition, British media reported on Friday.

    Earlier, when she arrived at Liverpool's John Lennon Airport on Thursday night, she was greeted by dozens of demonstrators chanting anti-war slogans.

    On Friday Rice is scheduled to visit a multi-cultural school and Ewood Park, home of the Blackburn Rovers, which is Straw's favorite soccer team. She will also visit the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, set up by Beatles member Paul McCartney.

    The secretary of state will also attend a gala concert at the Liverpool Philharmonic to celebrate the city's status as European Capital of Culture 2008. Her attendance has caused further controversy, with poet Roger McGough refusing to compere the event. Enditem

Editor: Yan Zhonghua
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