Reporters Without Borders is calling for demonstrations outside China’s embassies in London, Madrid, Berlin, Paris, Washington and Stockholm on 8 August, when the Olympic Games opening ceremony will be taking place in Beijing. Two demonstrations will be organised on 7 August in Rome and Ottawa. A rally is also planned outside the Olympic Museum in the Swiss city of Lausanne.
In Paris, those wanting to take part should meet at 1 p.m. at the corner of Avenue George V and Rue de la Trémoille in Paris’ 8th district. Reporters Without Borders will distribute "Beijing 2008" T-shirts to participants, as well other material for a peaceful demonstration.
Here are the times and venues of the demonstrations in the other cities:
- Berlin: in front of the Chinese embassy (Jannowitzbrücke) from 1 p.m. onwards on 8 August.
- Washington: near the Chinese embassy (2300 Connecticut Ave) from 8 a.m. onwards on 8 August.
- Stockholm: outside the Chinese embassy (Lidovägen 8) at 1 p.m. on 8 August.
- Lausanne: outside the Olympic Museum (Quai d’Ouchy 1) from 5 p.m. onwards on 8 August.
- Rome: outside the 4th district town hall at noon on 7 August.
- Ottawa: outside the Chinese embassy (515 St. Patrick Street) from noon onwards on 7 August.
- London: outside the Chinese embassy (49-51 Portland Place) from 1 p.m. onwards on 8 August.
- Madrid: outside the Chinese embassy (Calle Arturo Soria, 113) from 1 p.m. onwards on 8 August.
The aim of these demonstrations is to call for the release of Chinese journalists and human rights activists who have been imprisoned, and for an end to the harassment of those who been placed under surveillance or forced to leave Beijing. 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.
Reporters Without Borders is also organising a cyber-demonstration on 8 August at this web address: http://www.rsfbeijing2008.org. Internet users all over the world will be able to come and protest outside a virtual version of Beijing’s Olympic Stadium, waving a placard with the slogan of their choice.