MCC rejects plans for Lord~~s protest
Published: Wednesday, May 21, 2003, 2:21 [IST]
Copyright AFP 2001
London: Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), the owners of Lord's cricket ground, have rejected a request from an anti-Robert Mugabe protest group to have a dedicated spot inside the ground when the first Test against Zimbabwe starts there on Thursday. Peter Tatchell, one of the organisers of the 'Stop the Tour' campaign which wants Zimbabwe's two Test tour of England cancelled in protest at what it says are the human rights abuses carried out by the Zimbabwe president, asked for a spot inside Lord's to make their point. Tatchell wanted a space to display a protest banner, even though MCC ground regulations ban spectators from bringing in flags and banners. An MCC executive board meeting turned down Tatchell's request on Tuesday. Afterwards MCC spokesman Iain Wilton said, "We're happy for them to have a safe, peaceful and non-disruptive protest outside the ground and so are the police." A protest is due to take place outside Lord's on Thursday morning. Organiser Washington Ali says it will be a peaceful gathering.