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Pelosi Urges Bush Not To Attend Olympics Opening Ceremony

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) urged President Bush on Wednesday not to attend the opening ceremonies of the upcoming Summer Olympics in Beijing, as concerns over China’s human rights record have thrust the issue into the political spotlight in recent weeks.

Later in the day, the House passed a resolution criticizing China for its handling of recent unrest in Tibet.

The resolution--sponsored by Pelosi--criticized China for its "disproportionate and extreme" response to recent protests in Tibet and urged the Chinese government to hold talks with the Dalai Lama to discuss the situation.

The measure passed by a vote of 413 to 1, with libertarian Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) the lone member to vote against it.

Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) have introduced a similar resolution in the Senate.

The issue of Bush’s attendance at the Olympic Games has become a political football in recent weeks, after human rights activists called for a boycott because of China’s human rights record, especially its handling of street protests riots in Tibet and its trade with Sudan, which many see as enabling the genocide in the African country’s Darfur region.
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