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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Falun Gong barred from Chinese New Year parade in San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Members of the Falun Gong spiritual movement won't be allowed to participate in San Francisco's Chinese New Year parade and street fair.

The state Supreme Court last week rejected the group's challenge to the parade sponsor's decision to exclude them from the annual festival.

Falun Gong members sued the Chinese Chamber of Commerce in 2006 after the chamber barred them because of the group's ongoing opposition to the Chinese government.

A lawyer for the chamber says all participants with political messages are banned.

A lawyer for Falun Gong says they may take the case to the U.S. Supreme Court to determine whether sponsors of events such as street fairs and parades can deny participation for political reasons.

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