NOUMÉA WOMEN TAKE TO THE STREETS TO PROTEST RACIST INTERNET PICTURE

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NOUMÉA WOMEN TAKE TO THE STREETS TO PROTEST RACIST INTERNET PICTURE

NOUMÉA, New Caledonia (June 20, 2002 – Radio Australia)---Over 300 women, and representatives from unions and non-government organizations took to the streets of New Caledonia's capital Nouméa to protest a racist Internet picture portraying a Kanak woman with a monkey face.

The discovery of the digital document on the internal network of a local bank branch [Nouméa branch of the French bank Caisse d'Epargne] sparked an intense controversy in the French Pacific territory.

[SEE: Internet Montage Sparks Racism Controversy In New Caledonia at http://pidp.eastwestcenter.org/pireport/2002/June/06-14-10.htm

The Kanak and Exploited Workers Union organized the protest.

Bank General Manager Jean-Pierre Flotat, who received a delegation in his office during the sit-in, told the women he would get to the bottom of the complaint.

He said the bank has identified the source of the Internet picture and the employee involved would be severely disciplined.

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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