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Robert Mugabe celebrates 90th birthday at Harare stadium

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Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe has celebrated his 90th birthday with a huge party at a Harare stadium.

Thousands of Zimbabweans have attended the official 90th birthday celebration for the veteran leader.

Robert Mugabe, who has been in power since 1980, released 90 balloons into the air at Marondera stadium, east of Harare.

He turned 90 on Friday but was in Singapore for eye surgery at the time.

Many schoolchildren were among the crowd, waving flags and chanting Robert Mugabe’s clan name.

Huge cakes were on display in the centre of the stadium in Marondera, while the crowd wore red scarves, as is traditional on Robert Mugabe's birthday

Huge cakes were on display in the centre of the stadium in Marondera, while the crowd wore red scarves, as is traditional on Robert Mugabe’s birthday

Huge cakes were on display in the centre of the stadium in Marondera, about 50 miles from Harare, while the crowd wore red scarves, as is traditional on the president’s birthday.

In an hour-long speech Robert Mugabe said Zimbabweans did not hate former colonial masters the British, but loved their own country more.

The cost of Robert Mugabe’s celebration – estimated at about $1 million – has prompted criticism in a country suffering from severe economic problems.

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