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McCann spokesman faces Oxford Union protest

Original Source: OXFORD MAIL: FRIDAY 06 MARCH 2009
7:00am Friday 6th March 2009  By Ellie Simmonds »

CAMPAIGNERS hoping to discover what happened to missing Madeleine McCann will stage a protest in Oxford tonight.

Members of the Madeleine Foundation — a group unconnected to the official Find Madeleine group — plan to hand out flyers while the McCann family spokesman Clarence Mitchell speaks at The Oxford Union.

The 32-strong group disputes the claim that Madeleine was abducted from her family’s holiday apartment in Portugal on May 3, 2007.

Mr Mitchell is speaking at the union about his career as a journalist, media industry issues, and possibly Madeleine.

Five members of the Madeleine Foundation will be handing out leaflets and a 64-page booklet called What Really Happened to Madeleine McCann?

They have been handing out leaflets in the city over the past few days in the run-up to Mr Mitchell’s appearance and it is the group’s first public protest.

Founder Tony Bennett, a 61-year-old retired Essex solicitor and social worker, said: “We are a foundation to campaign for the truth about what happened to Madeleine and to ensure that she is remembered for the right reasons.

“If by the end of the evening we have informed people that there is another side of the story then our job will be done. We are not seeking to stop Clarence Mitchell speaking or cause any trouble.”

The leaflet details what the group claims are contradictions in reports of what happened on the night Madeleine, then three, disappeared.

Madeleine’s parents Kate and Gerry McCann have led a worldwide campaign to find their daughter. They deny being involved in her disappearance.

The couple faced criticism for leaving Madeleine and her brother and sister alone in the apartment while they dined in a nearby tapas restaurant with friends, with people checking on the children periodically.

No-one from the Find Madeleine group was available to comment.

An Oxford Union spokesman said: “It is people’s human right to protest in a non-dangerous and non-illegal way.”


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