Police: 14 Wounded in Clashes at Tanzania Opposition Rally
Eight policemen and six civilians were wounded in Dar es Salaam after an opposition campaign rally two days ahead of general elections in Tanzania, police said Saturday.
"Riots broke out after the rally when some suspected supporters of the CUF (Civic United Front) began chanting slogans like 'massacre the police', 'kill (President Benjamin) Mkapa' and 'Mkapa must go'," Dar es Salaam police chief Alfred Gewe wrote in a report seen by AFP on Saturday.
He did not say whether any of the injuries were serious.
The rally at a vacant lot on the western edge of the city drew tens of thousands of people on Friday evening.
Witnesses said the rioting began around 6:00 pm, after the official close of the election campaign.
"The police tried to stop them and they started throwing stones," Gewe said.
Riot police responded with tear gas and charged on the crowd, one witness said.
Voters go to the polls Sunday to elect a president, parliament and local officials on the Tanzanian mainland, while the semi-autonomous islands of Zanzibar and Pemba will vote in a president and assembly.
Mkapa is expected to be reelected for a second term, and his Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM) party is expected to win a majority of seats in parliament.
In Zanzibar, violence is feared because the CUF and CCM are running neck and neck -- DAR ES SALAAM (AFP)
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