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Olympic Boycott Pressure Reaches New Zealand

Media Advisory – 6 December 2007 For Immediate Release

Olympic Boycott Pressure Reaches New Zealand

Global Human Rights Torch Relay Arrives Sunday 16 December

Flying in from its Australian tour, the Human Rights Torch will travel from Auckland to Bluff in a three week nationwide tour, carrying the message: “Olympics and crimes against humanity CANNOT coexist in China.”

Since China was granted hosting rights to the Olympic Games in 2001, its human rights abuses have worsened – despite the Chinese regime promising to adhere to the Olympic charter and improve its human rights record.

Thus, the purpose of the global Human Rights Torch Relay is to call for a boycott of the 2008 Olympics as long as the human rights violations in China continue - particularly the persecution of Falun Gong, the most severely persecuted group.

Since being lit in Athens, Greece on August 9, 2007, the Human Rights Torch has travelled throughout Europe and Australia. Thousands of people have come together to support the Relay and protect the Olympic principles that promote “the establishment of a peaceful society concerned with preservation of human dignity”.

Human Rights Torch supporter comments include:

"The Olympic Charter emphasizes respect for the individual and the harmonious development of human personality and upholding of human dignity. None of this is happening in today's China. Thus I think China does not qualify to stage the Olympic Games." -- Jan Ruml MP, Vice-chairman, Czech Senate and Head of the Olympic Watch Committee

“As a great sporting nation and lovers of outdoor activities, New Zealanders should not allow the spirit of Olympic movement to be tarnished by a communist dictatorship.”
-- Professor Li Dong, NZ CIPFG member and Massey University Lecturer

"I think the Chinese communists have basically no understanding of human rights, but for sure they understand the language of economics." -- Swedish MP Cecilia Wigstrom

Please show your support for human rights in China by joining the global Torch Relay when it comes to a city near you.

For the New Zealand Torch Relay route – please check www.humanrightstorch.org for updated information. A detailed press release will be sent out prior to the Torch arriving in each specific city throughout New Zealand.

ends

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