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The World

December 22, 1987

The United States appealed to South Africa to spare the lives of six blacks convicted of the "necklace" murder of a black official during anti-apartheid riots in 1984. The five men and a woman, known as the "Sharpeville Six," were sentenced to hang for burning councilman Jacob Dlamini to death with gasoline-soaked tires around his neck during anti-apartheid protests in Sharpeville, which is near Johannesburg. Executing the six "would further weaken efforts toward reconciliation and set back attempts to negotiate over the political future of South Africa," the U.S. Embassy in Pretoria said in a statement. The European Communities, Israel and local anti-apartheid groups also have appealed for clemency for the six.

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