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Bush: plans to attend Beijing Olympics remain unchanged
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09:47, February 16, 2008

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U.S. President George W. Bush said on Thursday that he would attend the 2008 Beijing Olympics as scheduled.

"I'm going to the Olympics. I view the Olympics as a sporting event," Bush told the BBC in an interview aired on the day.

As for Hollywood movie director Steven Spielberg's withdrawal from Beijing Olympics as an artistic adviser over alleged concerns over the violence in Sudan's Darfur region, Bush said he had no reason to use the Olympics as a way to highlight such issues.

"I have a little different platform than Steven Spielberg, so I get to talk to President Hu Jintao," the president said.

Spielberg Wednesday announced his decision to quit the upcoming Olympics as an artistic adviser, citing concerns over the violence in Darfur, which he linked to the Chinese government.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao told a regular press conference Thursday that China has exerted positive efforts to resolve the Darfur issue, and that linking the issue to the Olympic Games will not help and is against the Olympic Spirit that separates sports from politics.


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