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    One of the greatest engineering feats in Africa, the Tanzanian-Zambian railway has been officially opened.


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    One of the greatest engineering feats in Africa, the Tanzanian-Zambian railway has been officially opened.

    At the opening ceremony the President of Zambia, President Kaunda, said the railway represented a blow for "The liberation of the oppressed masses of Africa."
    President Kaunda said the project was "colossal and unmatched in its magnitude by any other single project anywhere in the world."
    The opening ceremony coincided with the running of the first passenger train from New Kapri Mposhi in Zambia to Dar-es-Salaam the Tanzanian capital, a distance of more than 1800 kilometres (more than 1,200 miles).

    The railway was built with the help of Chinese engineers and workers.

    It provides Zambia with access to Tanzania's Indian Ocean ports. The new railway will also enable the full exploitation of the large iron one and coal deposits in Zambia.

    When the railway was first proposed the World Bank and other western interests considered the project economically univalve.

    But the Chinese government advanced more than 150 million pounds sterling (about 300 million U.S. dollars) as an interest free loan to the two African countries and did not demand any capital repayments until 1983.

    The Chinese ambassador to Tanzania, Mr. Li Yao-wen said the project represented the cementing of friendships between the people of China and those of Zambia and Tanzania.

    Mr. Li warned both government to guard the railway against possible sabotage.

    First passenger train of Tanzanian Zambia 1860 kilometres railway built through the Chinese assistance, from New Kapiri Mposhi in Zambia arrived in Dar es Salaam this morning at exactly 11,00 hours east african time. Hundred of people including ground of traditional dancing gathered at the Dar es Salaam station to welcome the train.

    The Ilala Area Commissioner Mrs. Kunambia having travelled some 18 kilometres with other party and government leaders to meet the train there.

    After the official party were received at Dar es Salaam station passengers on the train left with their personal belongings. In the train there were a few Europeans.

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    Reuters - Including Visnews
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