China campagning ...

China campagning against Rebiya Kadeer and WUC
16 March 2007 – UNPO, Rafto, Human Rights
in China, Society for Threatened Peoples, Non-violent
Radical Party, Human Rights House Foundation and
No Peace Without Justice have issued a Joint Statement
in response to concerns raised by the Mission of the People’s
Republic of China to the European Union.

China campagning against
Rebiya Kadeer and WUC

16 March 2007 – UNPO, Rafto,
Human Rights in China, Society
for Threatened Peoples,
Non-violent Radical Party,
Human Rights House
Foundation and No Peace
Without Justice have issued
a Joint Statement in response
to concerns raised by the
Mission of the People’s Republic
of China to the European Union

Joint Statement

Human Rights and East Turkestan

[Issued 16/03/2007]

A response to concerns raised by
the Mission of the People’s Republic

of China
to the European Union in the News Bulletin

No. 17, 06/03/2007

The Mission of the People’s Republic of China to the

European Union recently issued a News Bulletin warning

of the damage that EU-China relations might suffer

if Members of the European Parliament continue to

meet with representatives of the World Uyghur

Congress (WUC) and its leader Ms. Rebiya Kadeer.

The Bulletin’s main allegation is that WUC pursues

a platform of secessionism through acts of terrorism

and by “fanning the flames of religious fanaticism”.

This is by now a familiar charge, and a line of argument

that has been relentlessly pursued since the dawn of the

“war on terror” whenever Chinese authorities are

confronted with the human rights violations and

restrictions that characterise the East Turkestan

of today.

Chinese authorities have resolved to “strike hard”

against voices of opposition in East Turkestan.

Religious freedoms are extensively curtailed,

with Imams subject to strict censure and repairs

to many of their mosques forbidden; the arrests

that follow simple posters of dissent testify to the

restrictions imposed on freedoms of speech;

and the widespread torture and execution of

activists of opposition, even for non-violent

activities, breeds an atmosphere of fear and

desperation. These human rights violations

have been documented in countless reports

by groups such as Amnesty International,

Human Rights Watch, and the Unrepresented

Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO),

and the European Parliament has on several

occasions acknowledged Europe’s obligation

to hold Chinese authorities accountable.

Experience has shown that the ongoing oppression

of East Turkestan has not yielded the desired

stability in the region. Rather, the quest for

stability ought to be attained in partnership

with local groups which know first hand the

grief that terror breeds, and which offer a

strong platform upon which to build the

democratic structures which undermine

the support and credibility of acts of violence.

This is the political future towards which

WUC works.

China’s efforts to link Rebiya Kadeer and the WUC to

acts of terrorism have long failed to convince the

international community, and stand directly opposed

to the organisation’s stated commitment to principles

of democracy and non-violence. The United Nations

does not list the organisation amongst known supporters

of terrorism, and its members have worked tirelessly in

pursuit of an end to the circle of violence that plagues

their homeland. The local justice system in East

Turkestan continues to rely on confessions

extracted during torture, and the frequent

execution of local activists continues to

undermine the credibility of attempts to

forge a link between acts of terror and

local rights groups.

Ms. Rebiya Kadeer, President of WUC,

was herself amongst the victims of China’s

efforts to bring “stability” to East Turkestan.

Once a decorated and wealthy business woman,

Ms. Kadeer’s fortunes reversed when she joined

the cause of these local rights groups. An eight-year

sentence followed her conviction for “undermining

state security”, a charge justified on the grounds

that she had sent her exiled husband a clipping

from a local newspaper. An intensive international

campaign secured her release, after which she

continued to advocate the human rights of the

people of East Turkestan despite, as the Bulletin

notes, a warning from Chinese authorities.

Her work has subsequently earned her the

recognition of a Rafto Prize and several

nominations for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Ms. Kadeer’s struggle remains however

an intensely personal one, as although

she has secured her own release, Chinese

authorities have turned to her children who

remain in East Turkestan, subjecting them to

torture and long prison sentences.

China’s officials cite their deference to United Nations

resolutions concerning terrorism. Paramount amongst

these resolutions is however the principles that the global

campaign against these crimes must not come at the cost

of the advances that have been made towards

securing the fundamental human rights and

freedoms of all individuals. These are concerns

conspicuously absent from the Shanghai Convention

against “Terrorism, Separatism and Extremism”,

but which constitute the very core of the democratic

legacy of which Europe is rightly proud.

These are also the principles towards

which WUC work through the leadership

of Ms. Kadeer – work we are proud to support.

We, the undersigned, therefore urge all Members

of the European Parliament and Officials of the

European Union to guide China’s process

of modernisation and democratisation through

example; emphasising your freedom to listen

and learn from both sides of a dispute;

reminding Chinese officials that standards

of justice demand charges of terrorism be

examined by open and transparent institutions,

and that until the opposite is proved, individuals

are presumed innocent; and stressing that the

real threat to the China-EU strategic partnership

comes not from meetings with political opposition,

\but from China’s failure to abide by the standards

of justice and human rights that stand at the very

core of the European Union.

Signed by:

UNPO - Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization
The Rafto Foundation
Human Rights in China
Society for Threatened Peoples
Non-violent Radical Party
Human Rights House Foundation
No Peace Without Justi

Sites Google Agreed to Censor in China

Sites Google Agreed to Censor in China

This is an incomplete selection of search results which Google.cn self-censors working together with the Chinese government. Google does not censor access to the site itself, it only censors the site within the search result; access to the sites is blocked by the Chinese government.

Note: Even though it seems as though the right-most radio button ("search Chinese websites") was selected for some searches, this selection was not chosen by me and is automatically enforced by Google for certain searches – Google.cn doesn't allow you to search for e.g. falun gong using the "All websites" option. Whereever possible, the "All websites" selection was chosen.

Also note that while Google below the results sometimes points out that results are missing – the note can be roughly translated as "According to local laws and policies some search results are not showing" – it doesn't always, e.g. when searching for playboy.com (this behavior resembles Google.de's self-censorship when searching for e.g. stormfront.org, or Google.fr's censorship of ety.com).

To reproduce some of these searches, switch your browser language to Chinese and go to Google.cn. Some search queries, by the way, are case-sensitive.

(Screenshots from 1/26/06, updated 1/27/06 on, by Philipp Lenssen.)

Google.cn Google.com

How China breaks up refugees' homes

How China breaks up refugees' homes

By Kay Seok, North Korea researcher at Human Rights Watch

Published in The International Herald Tribune

"She went to the police station," the 6-year-old girl said in a barely audible voice. When asked if she knew what happened to her mother, she hung her head and stared at the floor. At the end of the interview, during which she said very little, I realized she was holding onto the hem of my jacket. I wondered if I reminded her of her mother.

Burmese authorities arrested journalists Thet Zin and Sein Win Aung of Myanmar Nation magazine at their office in Thingan Gyun township in Rangoon on the night of February 15, and have since detained them without charge in a nearby police station. Thet Zin, a prominent dissident, and his colleague were collecting material on the government�s crackdown on protests in Rangoon last September and the United Nations� response to the events.

�Burma�s military regime has once again shown its intolerance toward different political viewpoints by arresting journalists who were doing nothing more than reporting news and opinions,� said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch. �How can the Burmese authorities create even the semblance of a credible constitutional referendum in May when they won�t allow journalists to report the news?�

The nongovernmental organization Reporters Without Borders, in its annual report issued last week, documented nine prominent journalists in detention in Burma, including 78-year-old U Win Tin, who has been imprisoned since July 1989. The arrest of Thet Zin and Sein Win Aung bring to 11 the number of journalists known to be detained in Burma.

Burma�s government continues to sharply restrict media freedoms through a draconian system of press scrutiny that requires all domestic copy to be vetted and approved by the Press Scrutiny and Registration Division of the Ministry of Information (formerly controlled by the Ministry of Home Affairs). Journalists are routinely banned from publishing if their stories are thought to contain material critical of the military or positive towards the political opposition. Telecommunications, the internet, and even mobile phones are regulated to deter the free dissemination of information, both domestically and internationally.

�Burma�s generals refuse to tolerate any criticism, however well-intentioned,� said Adams. �The arrests of journalists and repression of access to information deny the Burmese people any real opportunity to debate the proposed new constitution.�

In addition, the Ministry of Home Affairs on February 13 informed U Tin Oo, one of the leaders of the opposition National League for Democracy (NLD), that his house arrest order would be extended for another year. The ruling State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) prolonged U Tin Oo�s house arrest a year ago. A former Army chief of staff who was purged in the late 1970s, U Tin Oo joined the NLD in 1988 and was arrested following the brutal government crackdown on NLD members in Depayin in late May 2003. He also spent much of the 1990s in prison and under house arrest.

The Burmese government has continued to arrest political activists in the wake of its crackdown against monks and political activists in August and September 2007. More than 1,800 political dissidents remain in prison in Burma for their involvement in peaceful political activities, a dramatic increase from a year ago. Many of the leaders of the �88 Generation Students group, such as Min Ko Naing, Ko Ko Gyi and other veteran activists from the mass protests in 1988, have been in custody since August.

Human Rights Watch has grave fears for the health and welfare of prominent political activists such as Hkun Tun Oo, the leader of the Shan Nationalities League for Democracy (SNLD), arrested in 2005 after criticizing the SPDC�s flawed constitution-writing process. He is reportedly seriously ill with diabetes and prostate complications in Putao prison in Kachin State. The labor activist Ma Su Su Nway, who was arrested in Rangoon in November 2007, also remains in detention despite a serious heart condition.

Human Rights Watch has serious concerns about access to adequate health care for both activists and called on the government to allow access to independent and competent doctors to determine whether the two, who in any case be should released, require better medical treatment. The International Committee of the Red Cross has not been permitted unfettered visits to Burma�s prisons since late 2005, and has suspended its visits.

This week, the United Nations special envoy to Burma, Ibrahim Gambari, is scheduled to visit China, India, and other Asian countries to gather support for his efforts to foster political reform in Burma. The SPDC has been delaying a trip by Gambari to Burma. The UN special rapporteur on human rights in Burma, Paulo Sιrgio Pinheiro, has still not been granted a visa to conduct his final research mission before he reports to the UN Human Rights Council in March.

�Despite plans for a constitutional referendum in May, the Burmese authorities are pursuing a policy of repression rather than reform,� said Adams. �Neighboring countries like China, India, and Thailand need to start putting serious public pressure on the Burmese authorities to end these serious human rights abuses.�
The Children's Rights Division monitors human rights abuses against children around the world and works to end them. We investigate all kinds of human rights abuses against children: the use of children as soldiers; the worst forms of child labor; torture of children by police; police violence against street children; conditions in correctional institutions and orphanages; corporal punishment in schools; mistreatment of refugee and migrant children; trafficking of children for labor and prostitution; discrimination in education because of race, gender, sexual orientation, or HIV/AIDS; and physical and sexual violence against girls and boys. Children's physical and intellectual immaturity makes them particularly vulnerable to human rights violations. Their ill-treatment calls for special attention because, for the most part, children cannot speak for themselves, their opinions are seldom taken into account and they can only rarely form their own organizations to work for change

The girl's Chinese father, a tanned, middle-aged farmer, explained how the child's North Korean mother was arrested by the police and sent back to North Korea in 2005. They had not heard from her since. The only good thing that came out of this tragedy was that the father could finally register the girl on his hukou, or household registration, meaning that she can attend school. In China, despite laws saying all children are entitled to nine years of elementary education, in reality, this only happens if a child can produce a hukou document.

"Where I live, if you want to obtain hukou for a child with a North Korean mother, you must obtain a police document verifying the mother's arrest and repatriation," said the girl's father. As a matter of policy, the local government is breaking up families and leaving children motherless. Once repatriated, the women are likely never to see their children again.

China continues to arrest and repatriate North Korean women, although they could face mistreatment, imprisonment, torture and even execution because, under North Korea's penal code, leaving the country without state permission can be considered an act of treason.

This strong risk of persecution upon return means that, under international law, many North Koreans in China are considered to be refugees. As a party to the 1951 Refugee Convention, the Chinese government has an obligation not to repatriate them, an obligation that Beijing ignores.

The 6-year-old girl who clung to my jacket lives in the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture in the eastern Jilin Province of northeast China, which has a large concentration of ethnic Koreans. Since the mid-1990s, hundreds of thousands of North Koreans escaped to China to avoid a famine that is estimated to have killed one million people, or about 5 percent of the population.

Her mother was among the North Korean women who ended up living with a Chinese man in a de-facto marriage. Some women entered such a relationship voluntarily while others are victims of trafficking. Local residents estimate that there are several thousand to tens of thousands of children born to North Korean mothers and Chinese fathers in the area. The Chinese fathers face a painful dilemma: They can register their children at the risk of exposing the mothers, who could be arrested and repatriated to North Korea, or they don't register their children, who then remain unable to attend school.

Desperate parents resort to bribing school officials, borrowing a Chinese child's hukou, or even buying a fake hukou to give the children access to education. But these measures are illegal, work only temporarily and certainly can't be used beyond elementary education.

Children who have migrated from North Korea with their parents are even more vulnerable than those that are half-Chinese, since it is impossible for them to obtain hukou. In some cases their parents are repatriated to North Korea, but the North Korean children remain behind.

"I am afraid they will find out I am North Korean, and kick me out of school," said a 13-year-old North Korean girl, who began attending school in 2007 by borrowing a Chinese girl's hukou. "Because I don't have hukou, I started school only this year, and I am four years older than my classmates, who are all Chinese."

Under China's Nationality Law, the children born to North Korean mothers and Chinese fathers are entitled to Chinese nationality. But there is a huge gap between rights and reality: The 6-year-old child should have been registered under her father's hukou, regardless of her mother's status. She should have been given access to education without any preconditions. And her mother should have been treated as a refugee and never have been repatriated to North Korea.

It is time for Beijing to take steps that are not only sensible and humane, but which would simply enforce China's own laws, and the international treaties it has ratified. All children in China must be able to attend school, regardless of residency status or nationality. Beijing has nothing to gain by continuing to ignore the rights of these children as it will inherit a new generation who are neither registered nor educated. In fact, Beijing has a lot to lose.

Hundreds of Burmese monks being massacred and tortured

By Avaaz
Our emergency petition to stop the crackdown on peaceful protesters in Burma is approaching 600,000 signatures, from every nation of the world, and is closing fast on our 1 million goal. But the situation in Burma remains desperate, with reports of hundreds of monks being massacred and tortured. Burma's rulers have also killed and expelled international journalists, cutting off global media coverage of their cruelty.

China is still the key - the country with the most power to halt the Burmese generals' reign of terror. We're delivering our message this week with a massive ad campaign in major newspapers, beginning Thursday with a full page ad in the Financial Times worldwide, and in the South China Morning Post. The strength of the ad comes from the number of petition signers listed – can we reach our goal of 1 million signatures this week? The link to sign the petition and view the ad is below, forward this email to all your friends and family!


China continues to provide key economic and military support to Burma's dictatorship, but it has been openly critical of the crackdown. Now we need the government to match words with actions. Our ad paints a powerful moment of choice for China in its relationship with the world – will it be a responsible and respected member of the global community, or will it be associated with tyranny and oppression?

People power, on the streets of Burma, and around the world, can triumph over tyranny. Our strength is in our numbers, spread the word!

With hope and determination,

Ricken, Paul, Ben, Graziela, Pascal, Galit and the whole Avaaz team.

For the best local reporting on the situation in Burma, try these links:




Avaaz.org is staffed by a global team of campaigners operating on 3 continents. We have administrative offices in London, New York, and Rio de Janeiro. Please direct mail to our NY office at 260 Fifth Avenue, 9th floor, New York, NY 10001 U.S.A.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Blaming China

It seems to blame China is the salient meme in the mainstream media
for what is happening in Burma, so I did a bit of a search after seeing
'The Chaser' and seeing their bit about how our very own ADF help train
the Burma Military and stuff.

There is a big long list of DIRTY LIST companies that you can boycott or tell them to get fucked about Burnma.

They ask to:
"Please contact one or more of the companies on the Dirty List and
ask them to cut their ties with Burma’s military government. If
appropriate, tell them you will not purchase their products as long as
they continue to support the regime in Burma."

I did a search of the Burma Dirty List UK website for Australia+Australian companies and the results are HERE so tell them to get fucked too.

Re: Blaming China - Lists

companies – who’s in, who’s

The Good
A large number of foreign companies have pulled out of Burma over
the last five years, the reasons for doing so include: difficulties
in working with the regime, consumer boycotts, damage to company
reputation, or incompatibility with corporate values. These companies
now include amongst others: Levi Strauss, Pepsico, Ericcson, Heineken,
Carlsberg, British Home Stores, Burton, River Island, Apple, Best
Western, Reebok and Compaq.

In 2001 significant divestment continued. Eighteen Australian companies
cut their economic ties with Burma as a result of an international
campaign against human rights abuses in the country. The companies
include Fosters Brewing Group, Ikea Australia, Intrepid Travel,
Mitsubishi Motors Australia, Telstra Corp and Multiplex Constructions.

The Anglo-Norwegian engineering group Kvaerner ASA announced the
cancelling of a $30 million deal with Premier Petroleum Myanmar
Ltd. within 24 hours of having signed the deal. The cancellation
came after fierce public criticism from the Norwegian media and
human rights groups.

Sara Lee, a leading retailer of underwear in the United States with
nearly $17.5 billion dollars in annual revenue and owners of Hanes,
Hanes Her Way, Leggs, and Just My Size brands ceased production
of its garments in Burma. In a letter to the Free Burma Coalition
Sara Lee Vice President and Chief Counsel Melvin L. Ortner wrote,
‘We want the Free Burma Coalition to know that production in
Burma violates both our Global Operating Principles and our Supplier
Selection Guidelines... two of our licensees did use Burma facilities
in direct violation of their contract with us... We have taken immediate
steps with both licensees to confirm that neither will make our
product in Burma again.’

In January 2002 the Burma Campaign UK, won a major victory over
the Swiss company Triumph International who have been producing
garments in Burma. After a short and aggressive high profile campaign
against Triumph, the company agreed to withdraw from Burma by May

The Bad
Despite the success of the international pro-democracy movement
in pushing companies to withdraw and dissuading others from investing,
some multinationals still refuse to act responsibly.

These companies include: Premier Oil, TotalFineElf, Unocal, British
American Tobacco, Sea Containers, Mitsubishi and Suzuki.

Though few, they are critical to the survival of the dictatorship.
The energy sector companies in particular have played a significant
role in buttressing the regime financially (see fuelling the oppression

Newspapers too cowardly to publish paid appeal ads

Today, our petition to China and the UN Security Council to stop the brutal crackdown on peaceful Burmese protesters is being delivered to the world in a full page ad in the Financial Times worldwide -- but the ad was rejected by other newspapers like the South China Morning Post and the Singapore Straits Times. Our message is an invitation to China to do the right thing in Burma, not an attack -- yet even that seemed too much for media that fear Chinese reprisals.

We won't let our voice be silenced like this. We're taking our message to the streets, in an international day of action on Saturday -- details are on our petition page, and below. And we're redoubling our efforts to make our voice louder: our petition is approaching 600,000 signatures, closing fast on our 1 million goal.The petition link is below - send this email to all your friends and family and help us reach 1 million voices by Saturday!


To organize an event for the global day of action, just follow the steps below. To attend an event, scroll down our petition page at the link above for a list of events around the world. Here's some simple steps for organizers:

  • Choose a public place or landmark in your town, and organize friends to go there all wearing the same maroon red clothing as the Burmese monks. Tell local media about your plans, and email the details and contact information to dayofaction@avaaz.org -- we will try to advertise your event on our petition page.
  • Ask people attending your event to share their feelings on this crisis and the need for action, and then tie a red ribbon or piece of cloth around fences or trees to leave a more lasting sign of your support for the Burmese.
    The worldwide outcry to save Burma's peaceful monks and protesters is one more sign of how the world is getting closer, feeling increasingly responsible to each other, and for each other as human beings. We're bringing a voice of humanity to this desperate situation, and we must not be silenced.

    With hope and determination,

    Ricken, Paul, Graziela, Ben, Sarah, Iain, Galit, Pascal, Milena and the whole Avaaz Team.

    PS – Here are some great links for local reporting on the current situation in Burma:



  • How German arms, trade and training strengthened the butchers

    Since the early 50s German arms, trade and training have helped strengthen the mass-murdering Burmese tyrants. A detailed story on that is available at http://publish.indymedia.org/en/2007/10/893519.shtml . Because it looks back several decades the report, which appears to have been someone’s thesis or some such academic exercise, is outdated in part. It is nonetheless very worthwhile reading because it goes to the roots of how the close ties have developed historically between German business interests, the German government and the military butchers who have ruled in Burma since 1962. The story highlights the special relationship one particular German firm, Fritz Werner Industry, has had with the Burmese regime since the early 1950's. I first saw the posting at German IndyMedia whose arrogant and impertinent controllers stamped it as “not original” and are likely to take it down – although earlier on they had published an abridged version of the very same story in German. Go to http://de.indymedia.org/2007/10/195833.shtml.

    Diet Simon

    Re: Hundreds of Burmese monks being massacred and tortured

    Oil Giant Chevron Urged to Cut Ties with Burmese Military Junta

    Chevron is one of the largest foreign investors in Burma and is the
    only remaining major U.S. corporation with a significant presence
    there. In 2005, Chevron bought the company Unocal weeks after the
    latter settled a lawsuit accusing it of assisting the Burmese military
    junta in the torture, murder and rape of villagers during construction
    of a pipeline. We play excerpts of the documentary Total Denial and
    speak to Katherine Redford, one of the attorneys who brought the suit.

    [includes rush transcript]


    Olympic flame lights passion of "Tango City"

    Olympic flame lights passion of "Tango City"

    Throngs of people gathered along the avenue. Horns and sirens honked all through the route to squeeze a lane for the media bus keep going. The torchbearers had to be very close to the rear of bus for walking down each 200 meters. That's how the Olympic flame managed its way through the journey on Friday in Buenos Aires.

    "It's really a spree best ever in the city," said the first torchbearer Carlos Espinola, the sailing silver medallist in the 2000 Sydney Games.

    The Olympic flame was greeted in great passion in the "Tango City", the only destination in Latin America and only Spanish speaking country, marking its seventh stop in 33-day global journey outside of mainland of China. It's also the first time ever for Buenos Aires welcome the arrival of Olympic flame.

    Spectators wait for the torch relay in Buenos Aires, Argentina, April 11, 2008. Buenos Aires is the 7th stop of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games torch relay outside the Chinese mainland.(Xinhua Photo)

    A grand opening ceremony in the Ecologic Reserve unveiled the pageant relay. Artistic Tango show by Inaki Urlezaga, composed by members of the National Symphony, started a day of cheering and applause. The military band from regiment 1 of the patricios infantry played the national athems of China and Argentina.

    Thousands of onlookers held the mobile phones, digital cameras and digital videos, trying to preserve the trace of the Olympic flame. Cheering, screaming and applauding were permeating all around the city.

    The absence of soccer legend Diego Maradona and Gabriel Batistuta shed little gloom on the relay as the enthusiasm of the city residents made up for everything. Spanish Primera Liga player Andres, D'Alessandro and former U.S. open tennis champion Gabriela Sabatini, 2004 Athens Olympic silver medallist in tennis women's double Paola Suarezs were leading the roster of torchbearers.

    Torchbearer Javier Conte raise the torch during the torch relay in Buenos Aires, Argentina, April 11, 2008. Buenos Aires is the 7th stop of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games torch relay outside the Chinese mainland. (Xinhua Photo)

    "To be the first to hold the torch is a great honor for me," said the substitute first-leg runner Espinola.

    "It has been always a dream for Diego Maradona to be part of the Olympic Games, but he was not available for the first leg because of I guess a reason out of his control," added Espinola, who won the America Cup three times.

    Suarez just wrapped her professional career and gets ready to start a new occupation as TV commentator.

    "I am working for TV channel to be a commentator. It's likely for me to go to Beijing Olympic Games as a commentator. The torch is really nice I see it on TV last night, I will keep it with all my trophies," said Suarez.

    "The visit of the Olympic Torch in Buenos Aires is a one time in a life event in the sports of our country," said Francisco Irarrazaval, sports undersecretary of Buenos Aires.

    Torchbearer Javier Conte raise the torch during the torch relay in Buenos Aires, Argentina, April 11, 2008. Buenos Aires is the 7th stop of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games torch relay outside the Chinese mainland. (Xinhua Photo)

    "In the city of Buenos Aires, we are very proud to have the opportunity to host an event of such magnitude, united by important human values that we want to reflect on our society."

    Liu Jingmin, the vice president of BOCOG expressed his sincere thanks for the support of Argentine people.

    "The Olympic flame brings the friendship of Chinese people to the far most destination of its global journey. We are taking efforts for the same cause, lasting peace and world prosperity," said Liu.

    "The Beijing Olympic Games is a great assemblage for the athletes from all around the world, and a great assemblage for all peoples around the world.

    "The tradition of soccer and tango in Argentina are well known among Chinese people. The passion of Argentine people is well learned today."

    The Olympic flame will be going next to the sole stop in Africa Dar es Salaam, the capital city of Tanzania.

    Olympic flame lands in Buenos Aires for its seventh stop

    Olympic flame lands in Buenos Aires for its seventh stop
    Updated: 2008-04-11 13:41

    Executive vice president of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games Liu Jingmin (2nd R), Chinese ambassador to Argentina Zeng Gang (R) and Argentine Olympic Committee (COA) vice president Alicia Masoni de Morea hold the Olympic flame lamp at Ezeiza International Airport in Buenos Aires, capital of Argentina, at 17:00 local time (20:00 GMT) April 10, 2008. The Beijing Olympic torch run in Buenos Aires is due to begin on Friday after the San Francisco relay ended smoothly on Thursday despite route changes made to ensure the dignity of the Olympic flame and the safety of torchbearers. [Xinhua]

    BUENOS AIRES -- The Olympic flame arrived in Buenos Aires on Thursday for the seventh stop of its global journey.

    The route in Buenos Aires is set to pass Women Bridge, Casa Posada, May Square, City Hall, Obelisk, Rose Garden and Equestrian Club, going through the Seven-Nine Street and Liberation Street. The destination is located outside of the River Plate Stadium. A rowing relay will be presented under the Women's Bridge.

    Argentine legendary soccer player Diego Maradona in this file photo undated. [Xinhua]

    High-profiled torchbearers are legendary soccer player Diego Maradona, Gabriel Batistuta, Anderes D'Alessandro. The last torchbearer is retired tennis player Gabriela Sabatini.

    Maradona is a former Argentine football player. He played in four World Cups and received the FIFA Player of the Century award, after being voted in 2000 in an Internet poll on the organization's website to decide the best player of the 20th century.

    Maradona won many trophies with Boca Juniors, FC Barcelona and SSC Napoli over the course of his career. During an international career that included 91 caps and 34 goals, he played in four FIFA World Cup tournaments, leading the Argentina national team to its victory over West Germany in 1986 World Cup, in which he collected the Golden Ball award as the tournament's best player.

    A woman waving a Chinese flag shouts before the beginning of the Olympic Torch relay in San Francisco, California April 9, 2008. The International Olympic Committee has no plans to stop the Beijing Olympic torch relay despite recent disruptions by Tibetan separatists and their supporters, IOC president Jacques Rogge said in Beijing on Thursday. [sohu.com]
    A woman waves flag during the Olympic Torch relay in San Francisco, California April 9, 2008. The International Olympic Committee has no plans to stop the Beijing Olympic torch relay despite recent disruptions, IOC president Jacques Rogge said in Beijing on Thursday. [sohu.com]
    Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Next

    Olympic flame arrives in Buenos Aires for first time

    Olympic flame arrives in Buenos Aires for first time

    The Olympic flame of the 2008 Olympic Games arrived at 17:00 local time (20:00 GMT) Thursday at Ezeiza international airport from San Francisco.
    The Olympic flame is visiting for the first time Argentina's capital, which has dressed up to receive it. The torch relay on Friday will include 80 people in its 13.8 km tour throughout the city.

    The icon of the Olympic Games arrived in the only Spanish speaking city of the 135 cities chosen for the 33-day 137,000 km world tour.

    Buenos Aires is the seventh stop in the flame's world tour, the longest in the Olympic history.

    Liu Jingmin (Front, C), the executive vice president of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2008 Olympic Games (BOCOG), shows the lantern which holds the Olympic flame with Chinese Ambassador to Argentina Zeng Gang(R) and Argentine Olympic Committee (COA) vice president Alicia Masoni de Morea at the Ezeiza international airport, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, capital of Argentina, April 10, 2008. Buenos Aires is the seventh leg of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games torch relay global tour outside the Chinese mainland.(Xinhua Photo)

    Liu Jingmin (C), the executive vice president of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2008 Olympic Games (BOCOG), walks out of the cabin with the lantern which holds the Olympic flame in his hands at the Ezeiza international airport, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina, April 10, 2008. Buenos Aires is the seventh leg of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games torch relay global tour outside the Chinese mainland. (Xinhua Photo)

    The honor guard stand before the special plane which carries the Olympic flame at the Ezeiza international airport, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, capital of Argentina, April 10, 2008. Buenos Aires is the seventh leg of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games torch relay global tour outside the Chinese mainland. (Xinhua Photo)

    Argentinians protest Olympic flame relay

    Argentinians protest Olympic flame relay

    BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Argentine runners relayed the Olympic torch past fenced-off protesters on Friday, as hundreds of China supporters in red windbreakers tried to reverse weeks of bad publicity for the host of the Summer Games.

    Activists opposing China's human rights record unfurled banners and promised "entertaining surprises" but pledged to keep their demonstrations peaceful after protests marred stops in London, Paris and San Francisco.

    Hundreds of spectators cheered as Chinese delegates wearing Argentina's blue-and-white lit the torch from a lantern that has carried the flame from the site of the ancient Olympic games in Greece.

    Mayor Mauricio Macri held the slender aluminum torch aloft, then passed it to three-time Olympic windsurfing medalist Carlos Espinola, who jogged into Buenos Aires streets flanked by Chinese bodyguards. Heavyset police from Argentina's navy huffed to keep up.

    A sea of about 500 China supporters in red windbreakers handed out by organizers waved banners and denounced what they called political interference in the ceremony.
    FIND MORE STORIES IN: China | San Francisco | London | Chinese | Paris | Argentina | Greece | Beijing Olympics | Sudan | Argentine | Summer Games | Tanzania | Buenos Aires | Southern Hemisphere | Giselle Davies | Falun Gong | pro-Tibet | Gabriela Sabatini | Government House | Obelisk | International Olympics Committee

    "We are here to celebrate Olympics!" said Shao Long Chen, a 19-year-old Chinese immigrant. "It's a great source of pride for us that the Olympics are being held in Beijing and that the torch is passing through Buenos Aires."

    As for the pro-Tibet protesters nearby, he said: "They're using sports to deliver a political message, and that's not right."

    A few dozen China supporters in red shirts rallied outside the presidential palace in favor of the Beijing Olympics.

    Human rights groups said their protests will be peaceful, and pledged not to try to grab the torch or put out the flame.

    "We do not want confrontations," said Falun Gong member Liwei Fu.

    But after protests marred earlier torch stops in Paris, London and San Francisco, Argentine officials scrambled to avoid trouble.

    "We think it's fine if there are protests, but we will accept them only if they are peaceful," said sports official Francisco Irarrazabal. "We hope there will be no physical aggression."

    Protesters say China doesn't deserve to host the Olympics because of its human rights record, its harsh rule in Tibet and its friendly ties with Sudan.

    Liu Qi, head of the Beijing organizing committee, told senior International Olympics Committee officials in Beijing that additional steps had been taken to protect the flame, "and we're very confident and comfortable with that," IOC spokeswoman Giselle Davies said.

    In Buenos Aires, about 1,300 federal police, 1,500 naval police and 3,000 traffic police and volunteers were deploying along the 8½-mile relay route — enough to ensure security "without going to the extreme that nobody will be able to see the torch," Irarrazabal said.

    The Olympic flame, in an ornately decorated lantern, was being protected by Chinese guards. The torch was quickly hustled off the plane on its arrival from San Francisco on Thursday, as officials canceled a planned photo opportunity on the tarmac.

    Guards loaded the lantern onto a bus and rushed away to a secret location, escorted by wailing police cars and an ambulance. Local security officials wouldn't say where it was headed.

    "That's a state secret," Irarrazabal quipped.

    The torch was to emerge for a nearly three-hour relay through Buenos Aires streets. Organizers said the event would begin with a tango performance and a torch-lighting ceremony on a waterfront canal. Argentine Olympic rowers would then carry the torch on racing boats down a canal before handing it off to the first of 80 runners.

    The relay route passes by the pink Government House and the iconic Obelisk, a traditional protest spot, and ends at an equestrian club with Argentine tennis great Gabriela Sabatini as the last runner.

    Weather could complicate the Argentine relay. Forecasts called for plunging temperatures and afternoon rain storms in the early Southern Hemisphere autumn. Organizers assured that the aluminum torch, fired by propane, wouldn't go out in a storm — but could be put on a bus in the event of heavy rain.

    Following the relay, the torch will be tucked aboard a Chinese jetliner and flown to Tanzania.

    Many Argentines didn't want any of the controversy. Ana Maria Tassano, who runs a chic leather goods store, said people should simply be celebrating the Olympic torch.

    "We have too many other problems to be worrying about the torch," she said.


    Olympic flame cruises through Buenos Aires

    Olympic flame cruises through Buenos Aires
    Organizers hope street fiesta will overshadow torch turmoil


    April 11, 2008 at 5:52 PM EDT

    BUENOS AIRES — The Olympic torch, a magnet for anti-China protests, cruised smoothly under heavy guard through Buenos Aires on Friday with nothing more serious than a couple of tossed water balloons threatening the flame.

    The uninterrupted relay along Buenos Aires' streets and docks contrasted with the chaos over the last week in San Francisco, London and Paris where protesters tried to snuff out the flame and organizers extinguished or hid the torch to keep it safe.

    The torch, touring the world ahead of the Olympic Games in Beijing in August, has drawn protests over China's policies, in particular its crackdown last month on unrest in Tibet.

    In Buenos Aires, the biggest crowds gathered to watch the torch pass the city's obelisk monument. Enthusiastic on-lookers taking pictures with their cellphone cameras outnumbered activists protesting China's rule of Tibet.
    A bus carrying the Olympic torch and its Chinese guards leaves Buenos Aires' International airport on Wednesday. Enrique Marcarian/Reuters
    Enlarge Image

    A bus carrying the Olympic torch and its Chinese guards leaves Buenos Aires' International airport on Wednesday. (Enrique Marcarian/Reuters)

    Torch lit in Buenos Aires

    The Olympic torch is in Argentina, its first stop after protesters marred a San Francisco ceremony
    Related Articles


    * IOC, China clash over human rights
    * Disabled torch bearer a hero in China
    * Hasty tour of San Francisco extinguishes the spark of protest
    * China reverses plan to reopen Tibet to tourism
    * Dalai Lama says he supports Beijing Olympics
    * China twisting Harper's message
    * Olympic group backs down on Tibet statement
    * Protesting monks storm media tour in China
    * As protesters gear up in San Francisco, IOC pledges to reassess torch relay
    * Another sickening sight for the man planning Vancouver's version
    * China's angry, uncertain reaction


    * Following the Olympic torch

    The Globe and Mail

    "We're really happy to have pulled it off," a relieved Francisco Irrarrazabal, the city's deputy sports secretary, told Reuters as the torch relay wrapped up.

    Police kept small groups of pro- and anti-China protesters apart where they gathered in front of Argentina's pink presidential palace and at other points along the 13.8-km route.

    After the first stretch through the streets of a riverside neighbourhood, torch bearers carried the flame onto a shell and rowed it down the Puerto Madero docks, which are lined with expensive restaurants and bars.

    Back on land, a ring of Chinese guards dressed in blue ran in formation around each torch bearer. Police on all-terrain vehicles ringed the guards and were surrounded by a motorcycle squadron.

    "It's not China that is organizing the Olympics, it's the Communist Party, to show a harmonious country, to say that all Chinese are happy, that they respect human rights. But it's exactly the opposite," said Alberto Peralta who joined the protests against China's human rights and Tibet policies.

    Beijing, which views the Olympics as an opportunity to showcase its growing influence on the world stage, has strongly condemned the torch protests, blaming Tibet's spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, and his followers.

    "The protesters are a political group that want to destroy (China). The (Olympics) are not for protesting, it's something nice for everyone. People shouldn't oppose them," said Lin Yonggui, a 25-year-old Chinese citizen who has lived in Argentina for 13 years and was among the pro-China groups on the street.

    China supporters at the march dressed in co-ordinated red jackets.

    Buenos Aires had braced for potential violence, with 1,500 Coast Guard officers, 1,200 police and 3,000 city workers ready to help keep order.

    "Obviously we can't ignore the thing people are protesting about. It's an issue that must be addressed, but we can't let it drown out this party which is about sports," said tennis star Gabriela Sabatini before she was handed the torch to carry it on the last leg of the Buenos Aires relay.

    The torch heads next to Tanzania, where Kenyan Nobel Peace Prize laureate Wangari Maathai has pulled out of the relay.

    Calls have intensified in recent days for world leaders to boycott the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in August.

    Beijing Olympics organizing committee chief Liu Qi said on Friday that organizers were working to avoid more chaotic scenes in the remaining legs of the torch relay.