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Thousands protest in Washington on Iraq

June 5, 2004 at 6:46 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, June 5 (UPI) -- Thousands protested in Washington in Lafayette Park across the street from the White House Saturday demanding the return of the troops from Iraq.

The father of Nick Berg, the Philadelphia man beheaded by al-Qaida operatives in Iraq last month, spoke out against the Bush administration's policies at the protest.

He urged Americans to "act now to stop war and end racism" and to "take non-violent direct action" to "let our leaders know (that) in this democracy, they have to do a better job of representing what we, the American people want, and what we want is peace now."

Berg said he held "the Bush administration accountable for denying (his) son his civil rights for the 13 days of his illegal detention," and it of "callous behavior" which contributed to Nick's death."

The demonstration, organized by the A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition, accused Bush and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld of war crimes. Shouting slogans against the war and demanding an "end to foreign occupation" in Iraq, Haiti and Palestinian territories, the protesters continued their march to the residence of Rumsfeld in downtown Washington. Neither Bush not Rumsfeld were in Washington.

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