Massive anti-war rally in U.S.

WASHINGTON OCT. 26. Thousands of demonstrators from more than 140 cities took to the streets here protesting against the continued war in Iraq.

They called for an end to the occupation and the immediate withdrawal of troops.

The protest is the first major demonstration since the President, George W Bush, declared the end of major combat on May 1.

Since then, 108 American troops have been killed in hostile fire; and 347 Americans died since Operation Iraqi Freedom got under way this March. The casualties include those who died from hostile fire, from accidents and other causes.

Organisers of the march estimated that at least 100,000 protesters took to the streets on Saturday with the major group, the International ANSWER — Act Now to Stop War and End Racism — saying that protests would also be held throughout major cities.

Several prominent personalities were part of the demonstration here with the former Attorney-General, Ramsey Clark, arguing that the greatest threat to peace was the policies of this Republican administration, not terrorism.

"This President made us international outlaws...What we've done in Afghanistan and Iraq is the greatest crime known," he told the demonstrators.

The protests come at a time when the approval rating of Mr. Bush is rapidly slipping even if it has not yet hit the panic buttons among the White House re-election campaign staff.

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