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Athens Olympics: Zimbabwe, Burma Given the Cold Shoulder - 2004-08-10


The Greek government has barred the sports ministers from Burma and Zimbabwe as part of the EU's sanctions against the two countries for their human and civil rights abuses.

Zimbabwe's Aeneas Chigwedere and Burma's Brigadier General Thura Aye Myint were previously barred from entering the European Union. A Greek official says his country is merely complying with the EU sanctions.

European Union governments accuse Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe of rigging his re-election. Burma is frequently criticized for human rights abuses.

The move comes after Greece said it would bar Belorussian Sports Minister Yuri Sivakov because of allegations against the former interior minister involving the disappearance of journalists.

Information for this report is provided by AFP and Reuters.

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