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Beijing Games 2008 28 July 2008

Olympic campaign protest greets Tour de France arrival in Paris

With less than two weeks to go to the start of the Beijing Olympic Games, a large flag showing the Olympic rings as handcuffs was unfurled today by members of Reporters Without Borders in the Tuileries Garden in Paris as the Tour de France cyclists went by on the last leg of the annual bicycle race.

“The support shown by the Parisian spectators for our protest is evidence of the exasperation that sports lovers feel about the human rights situation in China and Tibet,” Reporters Without Borders said. “With just 12 days to go to the 8 August opening ceremony in Beijing, we appeal to sports fans to protest against the crackdown on free speech activists in China.”

The Olympic rings turned into handcuffs are the symbol of the Reporters Without Borders Beijing 2008 campaign. Around 100 journalists, cyber-dissidents, bloggers and netizens are still imprisoned in China. The Chinese government has not kept the promises to improve respect for human rights that it made in 2001, when Beijing was chosen to host the 2008 Olympics.


In this country
3 June - China
“Tank Man” photo displayed outside Chinese embassy in Paris on eve of Tiananmen Square massacre
2 June - China
All references to Tiananmen Square massacre closely censored for 20 years
12 May - China
Foreign reporters prevented from working in Sichuan a year after earthquake
24 April - China
Concern that detained Tibetan magazine editor is being tortured
25 March - China
Government blocks access to YouTube

in the annual report
China - Annual report 2008
China - Annual report 2007
China - Annual report 2006

4 May 2009 - Nepal
Mission report : A call to end violence and impunity
2 April 2009 - Pakistan
Fact-finding visit by Reporters Without Borders to Swat “valley of fear”
16 March 2009 - Afghanistan
Report of fact-finding mission : Press freedom in free-fall in run-up to presidential election

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Asia press releases
3 June - North Korea
Pyongyang judges asked to be lenient with two American journalists
3 June - Afghanistan
US forces arrest a journalist in Khost
2 June - China
Blocking of Twitter, YouTube, Flickr and Blogger deprives Chinese of Web 2.0
2 June - Sri Lanka
Press freedom activist badly beaten in Colombo, hospitalised
29 May - Sri Lanka
Journalists trying to cover fate of Tamils are threatened, obstructed