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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 August 2006, 15:32 GMT 16:32 UK
In pictures: S Africa women march

Bus carrying women to the march

Women started gathering early in the morning in the South African capital to mark the 50th anniversary of a historic anti-apartheid march.

Woman participant at Pretoria march 09 Aug

They were commemorating a protest by 20,000 women demanding an end to hated pass laws that applied only to anyone who was not white.

Women dressed in traditional Zulu clothes at Pretoria march 09 Aug

This time tens of thousands came - some in traditional dress, dancing and singing - and the mood was carnival-like.

Woman participant at Pretoria march shakes stick  09 Aug

Old and young took part, led by some of the activists who marched in the original 1956 protest.

Woman participant at Pretoria march 09 Aug

Fifty years on, women are politically advanced, but South Africa still struggles with terrible rates of domestic violence.

Woman participant at Pretoria march 09 Aug

In addition to marking the 1956 march, participants were calling for more be done to stop domestic violence.

President Thabo Mbeki flanked on right by deputy president Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

President Thabo Mbeki told those gathered on the lawns of Pretoria's Union building that the "scourge" of women and child abuse had to be addressed.

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