Last updated at: (Beijing Time) Tuesday, March 25, 2003

World Awash with Continued Anti-war Demonstrations

More people on Monday joined protests against the United States-led war in Iraq, calling for an end to the war. They boosted the waves of anti-war demonstrations, rallies and marches that have rolled across the globe in the past five days.


More people on Monday joined protests against the United States-led war in Iraq, calling for an end to the war. They boosted the waves of anti-war demonstrations, rallies and marches that have rolled across the globe in the past five days.

The anti-war sentiment took new forms in New Zealand, where a Dominican priest and a Catholic worker in Auckland took their anti-war message to the US consul by making a cross on the consulate carpet with their blood.

Father Peter Murnane and fellow protester, Nicholas Drake, met US consul Douglas Berry in his office to read a statement. They each brought a container of their own blood with them, and poured the fluid on the floor of Berry's office, making a one-meter-long cross.

Father Murnane said Berry asked them not to pour out the blood, but made no attempt to stop them. He believed he and Drake got their message across.

In their statement to Berry, Father Murnane and Drake said the invasion of Iraq was an "immoral and criminal act", and the Bush administration was "spilling great quantities of blood on the soil of Iraq."

And in Australia, there were no signs the anti-war wave would calm down. About 400 aboriginal Australians stormed Parliament House in Canberra, demanding Prime Minister John Howard bring Australian troops home from the Iraq war, which broke out on Thursday.

The aboriginal demonstrators tried to take smoking branches into Parliament House and a line of armed police formed a barricade outside the main doors. Inside the House, Howard was targeted by anti-war protesters in the gallery.

In Sydney, anti-war protest organization, Walk Against the War Coalition, urged Australians to boycott Monday night's coverage ofthe Oscars.

"By switching off your televisions ... (tonight) you will be sending a message to the White House that you do not embrace this United States," a statement by the organization said.

Also on Monday, hundreds of Brazilian students threw stones at the US Consulate in Rio de Janeiro to vent their anger at the US-led war in Iraq. They shattered glass and injured a police officer.

During the demonstration, a Molotov cocktail was hurled against the consulate building, causing no damage, witnesses said.

The demonstrators later headed for Rio Branco Avenue in downtown Rio, where they broke the windows of US fast-food giant, McDonald's, considered a US symbol.

In Italy, thousands of students and teachers took to the streets of many cities to protest the government's school reform and the war in Iraq, waving flags and banners for peace.

Large demonstrations were held in Rome, Turin, Bologna, Milan, Bari and Naples.

The Middle East region also erupted with growing anger at the US-led attacks.

Thousands of Egyptian university students, in their third day of demonstrations, rallied on the campus of Cairo, Al Azhar, Ain Shams and Alexandria universities, holding up placards slamming US-British aggression on Iraq, and the Israeli crackdown on Palestinians, and calling for an end to the war and protection of the Iraqi people.

Hundreds of Egyptian journalists displayed their opposition to the war by staging a sit-in at the headquarters of the Egyptian Press Syndicate in Cairo.

In Iran, more than 700 people rallied on Monday afternoon at Ahwaz, capital city of southwestern Khuzestan province, in the first anti-war protest held in Iran since war broke out in neighboring Iraq in the early hours of Thursday.

The demonstrators, chanting "Death to America", "Death to Israel" and "Death to Britain", gathered in front of the city's religious seminary to denounce the US-led coalition's attacks against Iraq.

In Kyrgyzstan, more than 100 youths, mostly from non-government youth organizations, took to the streets of the capital, Bishkek, and rallied at a government-designated intersection to voice opposition to the war in Iraq. They chanted "No war on Iraq" and "US troops get out of Kyrgyz capital airport."

Police stood guard as demonstrators marched, but they were prevented from approaching the US Embassy in Bishkek.

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