At the costal town of Aveiro, about half-way between the cities of Porto and Coimbra, a three-day anti-government Congress opened on Thursday (May 15).
LV Speaker on platform addressing Congress
SV Colonel Ribeiro listening PAN along to other members
CU Sign Second Congress of Republic
LV People listen
SV Colonel Ribeiro speaking
LV Colonel on platform
LV PAN..audience listening
LV Another speaker
SV Man speaking
SV Woman speaker
LV PAN..of audience
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: At the costal town of Aveiro, about half-way between the cities of Porto and Coimbra, a three-day anti-government Congress opened on Thursday (May 15). Some 1,000 people attended the meeting and heard speeches from 85-year-old Colonel Helder Ribeiro, a one-time Minister of War; and other anti-Caetano personalities.
This Congress - only the second of its kind to be held in II years - was specially authorised by the newly-appointed civil governor of Aveiro, Dr. Vale Guimaraes.
As political meetings in Portugal are usually only permitted within 30 days of an election, this one is considered a major opportunity for the opponents of Dr. Marcello Caetano to co-ordinate their campaign for the general elections which are due in November.
Dr. Caetano was appointed Prime Minister last September in succession of Dr. Antonio Salazar -- who had ruled the country for 36 years until he was struck down by a massive stroke. The new Premier has carried out a programme of continuation of the policies of Dr. Salazar, and it is basically this the Congress and its members are opposing.
The Congress was opened by 85-year-old Colonel Helder Ribeiro, who was Portugal's Minister of War from 1919-20 and 1924-25.
At the meeting, various well-known personalities spoke -- including Dr. Mario Soares, the Socialist leader who only last November returned from political exile; the novelist Urbano Tavares Rodrigues; and the Catholic publisher Antonio Alcada Baptista. A special message from a one-time Prime Minister, Francisco Pinto da Cunha Leal, was read to the crowd -- in it he said that what fundamentally separated the Republicans from the present regime, was the deprivation of individual liberties.