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Sinn Féin welcome EU Parliament report on GM

19 December, 2003

Sinn Féin Spokespersons on Agriculture, Martin Ferris TD and Gerry McHugh, have welcomed the adoption by the European Parliament of a report on Genetically Modified food and crops. The report, which was written by German Green MEP Friedrich-Wilhelm Graefe zu Baringdorf, was adopted by the Parliament yesterday.

It proposes that the EU adopt much stricter guidelines on tolerance levels for GM and on potential contamination of conventional and organic crops. The report also supports the right of Member States to declare GM free zones.

Deputy Ferris and Councillor McHugh said: "While Sinn Féin remains convinced that the island of Ireland ought to be made GM free, we welcome this report as a significant advance on the proposals put by the Commission. We particularly support the idea that states ought to be able to designate GM free zones, and we will continue to argue that the island of Ireland as a whole should be declared as such.

"It is also right that the liability for any contamination of non-GM crops be placed firmly on the GM producers themselves. In a Dáil reply this week, the Irish Government has again stated that it will support the introduction of GM products when this comes back for decision after Christmas. We believe that this is a mistake and will continue to call for a reversal of the decision and for the exclusion of GM products from the North of Ireland." ENDS

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