Repression continues in China, one year before Olympic Games

  • The Reporters Without Borders list of nine things the Chinese authorities must do before the Beijing Olympic Games:
  • Reporters Without Borders also supports the eight demands of the Collectif Chine JO 2008 (China 2008 Olympics Collective), an alliance of nine human rights organisations based in France:
  • Reporters Without Borders wrote to IOC Jacques Rogge in June 2007

When the International Olympic Committee assigned the 2008 summer Olympic Games to Beijing on 13 July 2001, the Chinese police were intensifying a crackdown on subversive elements, including Internet users and journalists. Six years later, nothing has changed. But despite the absence of any significant progress in free speech and human rights in China, the IOC’s members continue to turn a deaf ear to repeated appeals from international organisations that condemn the scale of the repression.From the outset, Reporters Without Borders has been opposed to holding the Olympic Games to Beijing. Now, a year before the opening ceremony, it is clear the Chinese government still sees the media and Internet as strategic sectors that cannot be left to the “hostile forces” denounced by President Hu Jintao. The departments of propaganda and public security and the cyber-police, all conservative bastions, implement censorship with scrupulous care.At least 30 journalists and 50 Internet users are currently detained in China. Some of them since the 1980s. The government blocks access to thousands for news websites. It jams the Chinese, Tibetan and Uyghur-language programmes of 10 international radio stations. After focusing on websites and chat forums, the authorities are now concentrating on blogs and video-sharing sites. China’s blog services incorporate all the filters that block keywords considered “subversive” by the censors. The law severely punishes “divulging state secrets,” “subversion” and “defamation” – charges that are regularly used to silence the most outspoken critics. Although the rules for foreign journalists have been relaxed, it is still impossible for the international media to employ Chinese journalists or to move about freely in Tibet and Xinjiang.
http://www.rsf.org/rubrique.php3?id_rubrique=174For media coverage of this Reporters sans frontières report, click here.

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