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Philippine Christian group ends protest blocking Manila highway

MANILA - An influential Christian group in the Philippines ended a protest on Monday over the prosecution of its leaders, calling off a blockade by 20,000 members of a main road in the capital after talks with the government.
The Iglesia ni Cristo (Church of Christ), or INC, has 2 million members, most in the provinces, who usually vote according to their leaders' advice, so it is courted by politicians and has influence on government appointments.
Group members have been protesting since Thursday over what they see as government interference in church affairs. On Friday, they blocked a main highway in Manila with the crowd swelling to 20,000 people early on Monday, police said.
A church leader later said talks with the government had ironed out problems and the protest was over, though he did not go into details.
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