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9 Mär 2006

Bert Hill, Ottawa Citizen

Alcatel defends Sudan sales - 'Limited' sales in war-torn region 'promote democracy,' firm tells critics

Alcatel has rejected a campaign by U.S. pension funds to stop selling communication equipment to Sudan,...in which an estimated 300,000 people have been killed in violence orchestrated by the government. CALPERS, a big California public sector pension fund with more than $200 billion U.S. in assets, has warned it could sell the shares of Alcatel and other companies if they continue to do business in the Sudan... [Alcatel said,] "We, too, are deeply concerned with the plight of the Sudanese people. However, we sincerely hold the view that our limited operations in Sudan help foster the dissemination of communications services to the population as a whole and as such, our activities help promote democracy and economic development." [also refers to Siemens, ABB operations in Sudan; pressure on Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!, Cisco, Nortel over practices in China]