Scrolling news:

Iraq: US seeks verification of ‘Islamic State’ beheading of journalist James Foley

Japan: Torrential rains unleash deadly landslide killing a dozen people in Hiroshima

Palestine: Three Palestinians killed, incl 3 year-old child, in Israeli airstrikes on Gaza City

Palestine: Dozens Palestinians abducted by Israeli forces in West Bank, Jerusalem

Palestine: Israeli army demolishes cave housing family near Bethlehem

Palestine: Several Palestinians kidnapped by Israeli forces in West Bank, Israeli settlers attack cars

Palestine: Israel bombs Gaza, withdraws negotiators from Cairo

Pakistan: 18 suspected militants killed in fresh NWA, Khyber airstrikes

US: Ferguson curfew lifted, Obama appeals for restraint

Iraq: Obama says Mosul Dam retaken from extremists with US help

Palestine: Palestinian female detainee denied family visits since her arrest in 2012

Palestine: Nine Palestinians kidnapped by Israeli soldiers from West Bank, Jerusalem

Palestine: Israeli army detonates two homes in Hebron, seals one with concrete blocs

Palestine: Six Palestinians kidnapped by Israeli forces in West Bank

Syria: Airstrikes kill 31 terrorists in Raqqa city

Palestine: Body recovered in Shujaiyya a month after ‘massacre’ by Israel

Palestine: Hamas says Israel stalling on agreement as Gaza death toll hits 2016

US: Curfew imposed for second night in Ferguson, Missouri

Palestine: Palestinian arrested filming Israeli settlers throwing stones in W Bank

Israel: 5 of 64 Israeli soldiers killed in Gaza invasion were killed by ‘Friendly Fire’

US: Fifty year anniversary of Martin Luther King speech celebrated in Washington

25th Aug 2013

Tens of thousands have taken to the streets of Washington to remember the landmark speech by Martin Luther King fifty years ago. In the wake of the Trayvon Martin killing, many people spoke of challenges still ahead.

The marchers followed the route taken in 1963 by 250,000 people to the Lincoln Memorial to hear Martin Luther King Jr’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech. The speech and march helped spur the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and 1965 Voting Rights Act.

Eric Holder, the first African-American attorney general, thanked those who marched a half century earlier. He said he would not be in office, nor would Obama be president, without them. “They marched in spite of animosity, oppression and brutality because they believed in the greatness of what this nation could become and despaired of the founding promises not kept,” Holder said on Saturday.

But the shooting of unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin in Florida last year and the acquittal of his killer who a jury found had acted in self-defense, together with the Supreme Court’s recent decision to strike down a portion of the nation’s voting rights law, prompted a number of speakers to talk of the challenges ahead.

“King saw the possibility of an Obama 50 years ago. The world is made of dreamers that change reality because of their dream. And what we must do is we must give our young people dreams again,” civil rights leader Al Sharpton said.

Other activists cited persistent unemployment among African-Americans, which is about double that of white Americans. “This is not the time for nostalgic commemoration,” said Martin Luther King III, the oldest son of the slain civil rights leader. “Nor is this the time for self-congratulatory celebration. The task is not done. The journey is not complete. We can and we must do more.”

Saturday’s gathering was the precursor to the actual anniversary of the August 28, 1963 March on Washington. On the day of the anniversary, President Barack Obama is to speak from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, the same place King stood when he delivered his stirring speech.

King won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 but was assassinated on April 4, 1968 at age 39.

jm/ccp (dpa, AP)

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