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Google asks US, EU to push China on net censorship

By Samyuktha
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    Brussels, Jun 10: Months after leaving China due to censorship issues, the Internet giant, Google has called on American and European governments to urge the communist nation to lift restrictions that it puts on the medium of internet.

    Speaking to reporters here on Tuesday, Jun 9, Google"s Chief Legal Officer David Drummond said that the search engine giant has sought the government of the western world to press China into easing Internet censorship norms as it was posing a barrier to free trade.

    "Censorship, in addition to being a human rights problem, is a trade barrier. If you look at what China does - the censorship, of course, is for political purposes but it is also used as a way of keeping multinational companies disadvantaged in the market," he remarked.

    Google has asked the governments to defend the free trade in information with the same kind of rules that they use to complain of China's below-cost sale of products, the lawyer said adding that government talks are "the only way that it's going to change, that this tide of censorship or this rising censorship is going to be arrested".

    The Google-China conflict began earlier in 2010 when Google stopped self regulating its search results in line with Chinese rules after Chinese hackers attacked its software coding and hijacked the Gmail accounts of human rights activists.

    "The cyber attack was sort of the final straw because we felt that it was increasingly hard to do business there in accordance with our values," Mr Drummond said.

    Since Mar 2010, Google has ben redirecting search requests from mainland China to Hong Kong as the country does not place restricts in line with those impose by China.

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