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Anti-racism rally defies the critics

Pansy Wong MP National Party Asian Relationships Spokeswoman

Anti-racism rally defies the critics

National MP Pansy Wong says she is overwhelmed by the turn out at Saturday's anti-racism rally in Christchurch.

"Turning up at a public rally comes naturally to most New Zealanders but quite often that's not so for Asian communities."

Mrs Wong has been a vocal supporter of the theme behind the rally and earlier called for Cantabrians to have their voices heard on this important issue.

"The community has sent a strong message that the city adopts a zero tolerance stand towards racism. "The positive outcome and the large turn out of more than 2,000 people has sent a strong message to the ethnic communities.

"I hope others listen to that message and show their support for racial equality at peaceful rallies or in petition form. I plan to make sure Asian communities throughout New Zealand hear what is being said." Mrs Wong hopes to work with the rally organisers and others on more anti-racism initiatives.

"There is no silver bullet, but the public has spoken on the need to march together towards harmony." She rejects the suggestion that the climate is right for racist groups such as National Front to prosper.

"Fair minded New Zealanders will not let that happen. Fair minded New Zealanders know that for any modern democratic society to prosper there has to be one set of rules that apply equally to everyone.

"Thank-you Canterbury, for showing the rest of New Zealand that our similarities are more important than our differences," says Mrs Wong.

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