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Games Organizers Respond to Spielberg

ICC Note:

Director Steven Spielberg has decided to withdraw from his role as an artistic advisor for the Olympic games on the grounds of China’s continued business dealings with Sudan despite the rampant human right’s abuses. It is believed that China’s relationship with the region provides it considerable influence, though China continues to prove its disregard for the value of human life and freedom. China’s response thus far has been to accuse protestors of “ulterior motives” in linking the Olympic games with the nation’s political decisions.


2/14/08 China (AssociatedPress) China is blaming activists with “ulterior motives” for linking the Beijing Olympics to the nation’s involvement in Sudan, with top officials saying they shared concerns over the humanitarian crisis in Darfur.

Games organizers and the Foreign Ministry responded Thursday to Steven Spielberg rejecting a role as an artistic adviser to the Olympics.

The film director withdrew on Tuesday on the grounds that China wasn’t doing enough to pressure Sudan over the conflict in its western region of Darfur.

“Linking the Darfur issue to the Olympic Games will not help to resolve this issue and is not in line with the Olympic Spirit that separates sports from politics,” BOCOG said.

China is on the defensive against critics using the Games to spotlight the communist regime’s curbs on human rights, press freedoms, and religion.

“It is understandable if some people do not understand the Chinese government policy on Darfur,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao said. “But I am afraid that some people may have ulterior motives, and this we cannot accept.”

“On the issue of Darfur, empty rhetoric will not help,” Liu said. “What is more important is to do more things to help with the peace process there and alleviate the humanitarian crisis.”

Fighting between government-backed militia and rebels in Darfur has killed more than 200,000 people and left an estimated 2.5 million displaced since 2003.

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