Mon, Jun 07, 2004 - Page 7 News List

Protesters greet Bush in France

AP , PARIS

Some 12,000 people, many of them students, marched through central Paris on Saturday to protest the policies of visiting US President George Bush and denounce the invasion of Iraq.

Numerous demonstrators carried placards with a picture of Bush below the words: "Bush: Terrorist No. 1." Some of the protesters then set the posters afire.

There were no reports of violence. Bush himself was some 3.5km away, behind some of the heaviest security the French capital has seen in years.

Organizers said that some 25,000 people took part in the demonstration, but police put the number at 12,000. Among them was a small contingent of Americans, holding signs "Americans Against Bush."

"The coalition in Iraq is not an army of liberation. It's an army of occupation," said one of the protesters, 19-year-old university student Maxime Sorin, of Marly Le Roi, outside Paris.

While the US-led war in Iraq was the main target for the protesters, many also objected to Bush's overall Mideast policies.

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