(IPS) WASHINGTON -- The brutal military regime in Burma, which is not one of the countries taking part in the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, nonetheless cast a shadow over the opening ceremonies.
The Salt Lake City Olympic Committee, or SLOC, is being pressed by human rights and labor groups to explain how parts of the uniform worn by more than 10,000 runners who helped carry the Olympic torch to the Winter Games were manufactured by workers in Burma.
The country's labor record is so bad that it became the first nation in history to be suspended by the International Labor Organization (ILO).
"No responsible organization or body should make use of products originating in Burma," wrote Guy Ryder, the head of the Brussels-based International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) in a letter to Jacques Rogge, the president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) last week.
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