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Tuesday, 26 June, 2001, 07:12 GMT 08:12 UK
US court blow to affirmative action

The United States Supreme Court has upheld a ruling banning a Texas Law School from reserving places for students from ethnic minorities - a policy known as affirmative action.

The case was originally brought by white students who said the policy amounted to discrimination against them.

Texas education officials disagreed and argued that affirmative action was the best way of attracting minority students.

But the Supreme Court has now, in effect, rejected that argument and backed the white students. Earlier this year, a similar ruling ended affirmative action at a Law School in the state of Michigan.

Correspondents say the case is likely to fuel public debate over affirmative action, which critics argue is no longer a useful tool in ending racial discrimination.

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