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Anglican leaders mark end of slavery

March 24, 2007 at 8:27 PM   |   Comments

LONDON, March 24 (UPI) -- The two leaders of the Anglican Church led a "Walk of Witness" through London to mark the 200th anniversary of Britain's abolition of slavery.

Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and Archbishop of York John Sentamu presided at a service at the end of the march, the BBC reported.

Several thousand people joined the march, including other religious leaders. One group marched first from Hull, 250 miles away, wearing chains. William Wilberforce, the English abolitionist, represented Hull in parliament.

Last year, the Church of England, which owned slaves on plantations in the Caribbean, made a formal apology for past wrongs.

"The intention of today is not only to renew that act of repentance, not just an apology but repentance, acknowledgment that we were part of this terrible history, but also to wake people up to where we are now, the fact there still are problems," Williams said.

The 200th anniversary of abolition is Sunday. A national service is scheduled Tuesday at Westminster Abbey.

© 2007 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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