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Prime Minister's GE Attitude Dismal


Auckland, Tuesday 14th October, 2003: "Claims by the Prime Minister that she has been on 'bigger marches' than Saturday's massive 35,000 strong rally in Auckland and that the protests against lifting the moratorium are '18 months too late' are pathetic excuses for ignoring the people," said Greenpeace spokesperson Steve Abel today.

"The Prime Minister has been consistently blind to the prolonged public campaign for a GE free New Zealand that has included numerous protests, submissions, petitions, letters, Hikoi, polls and three large Auckland marches in 2001, 2002 and last Saturday."

"It seems Helen Clark has become so removed from her own activist past that she now utterly dismisses the place of mass protest as a crucial vehicle of public opinion in a democratic country," said Abel.

It is against this public opinion the government intend to pass the NOOM legislation today which paves the way for GE releases after October 29.

"In light of her previous claim that 'she came into government to restore public faith in democracy' Greenpeace thinks the Prime Minster's attitude is dismal and that the tens of thousands of New Zealanders who have turned out to march in the last three years calling for the GE moratorium to be extended deserve a lot more respect," said Abel.

"Comments by Marian Hobbs that GE release will 'pay for our health and education' show just how desperate the Government is now to justify their GE policy in the face of the huge public opposition. What's more this comment reveals how seriously deluded the Environment Minister is about the poor economic prospects for GE crops and food," said Abel.

Greenpeace demands that the Government listen to the people and immediately pass legislation to extend the GE moratorium. For more information contact:

GE Campaign Spokesperson: Steve Abel, 021 565 175 Greenpeace Communications Officer: Suzette Jackson, 021 577 556

An aerial photo clearly showing the huge scale of the march can be viewed and downloaded at: http://www.thebigmarch.net

GREENPEACE AOTEAROA NEW ZEALAND http://www.greenpeace.org.nz +64 09 630 6317 0800 22 33 44

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