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Protesters Disrupt Botha Visit to French Memorial

November 11, 1986|United Press International

LONGUEVAL, France — South African President Pieter W. Botha dedicated a memorial to South African world war victims today as 500 protesters chanted anti-apartheid slogans and shattered vehicle windows.

Demonstrators crossed police barriers and got to within 500 yards of the mid-morning ceremony before a large force of police officers stopped them.

"Liberate Mandela," the crowd chanted in a reference to jailed African National Congress leader Nelson Mandela. "Botha assassin" and "Fascists out of France," they shouted.

Before the ceremony some protesters shattered several windows on vehicles that tried to pass through the crowd toward the memorial.

The French government has said Botha will not be received by senior officials before his departure Wednesday, but he met with a low-level official of the Foreign Ministry when he arrived Monday.

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