U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice set off on a tour of northern England Friday, with protests over the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq expected as she visited a school, an aerospace factory and a soccer stadium with British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw. Rice landed in the city of Liverpool late Thursday for a three-night visit as demonstrators carrying placards lined the streets to protest her arrival in England .
Campaigners opposed to coalition forces remaining in Iraq have threatened to blight the tour and have already forced the cancellation of a planned trip to a mosque, British officials said. Muslim leaders in Blackburn , the northern constituency Straw has represented in Parliament since 1979, scrapped the visit to the Hidayah Mosque, claiming Rice's safety was at risk, reports the AP.
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Eyewitnesses said that explosions could be heard in the centre of Kyiv. Smoke was seen rising above Zhuliany Airport (Kyiv International Airport)