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A GE Free Flag Flies At The Heart Of New Zealand

Nelson Wednesday 31st January - Greenpeace today scaled a monument at the geographical centre of New Zealand and flew a GE free flag from its needle. On the same day GE free Nelson presented a petition and map to the Mayor of Nelson calling on him to declare the city and surrounding district a GE free zone.

GE free Nelson has collected over 7600 signatures on a petition and marked on a map the addresses of the petitioners with little green x’s. “The picture is clear” said Suzy Lees of GE free Nelson, ”Thousands of citizens are saying no to GE and have made their mark on this map. We know that the Mayor, Paul Matheson, supports the people of Nelson in their intention to declare that a GE free New Zealand starts here. Yesterday at the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification he stated on video that he felt Nelson would be the first city to fly the GE free flag in 2001.”

“The world is watching New Zealand right now to see whether it will live up to its clean green image and go GE free. Genetically engineered crops are an unpredictable form of living pollution that nobody wants. That’s why there is a world-wide movement of communities and countries declaring themselves GE free zones. Now, thanks to the concerns of thousands of Nelson citizens. there is a GE free flag fluttering at the heart of New Zealand too,” said Jim Thomas, an international GE campaigner for Greenpeace.

Greenpeace, who is working with GE free Nelson, has been running public information stalls whilst their flagship the Rainbow Warrior is undergoing repairs in Nelson dock.

For more information or pictures contact Jim Thomas in Nelson 021 1465477 or Tamsin 025 790 817. For more information about the petition and GE free Nelson contact Suzi Lees on 025 232 1069 or 03 5467966


1. The flag will be raised at 9am on the hill that marks the geographical centre of New Zealand, just east of the city of Nelson. Greenpeace will have stills photos available.

2. GE free zones already exist throughout the world, including Rio Grande de Sol, in Brazil, Tuscany and Lazio in Italy, Tasmania and Waiheke.

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