IOC president speaks out on China human rights

(france24) - China bluntly told the world Olympics chief Thursday to keep out of politics, in a tart exchange on human rights following days of protests that have shadowed the Olympic torch around the world.

International Olympic Committee president Jacques Rogge said the Games were in "crisis" following the demonstrations, and urged China to respect its pledge to improve its rights record before the event begins in August.

China fired back that Rogge should keep politics out of the Olympics, which Beijing hoped would showcase its much-touted "peaceful rise" to power -- but which have instead become a public relations nightmare.

Separately, China's Ministry of Public Security said it had cracked a terrorist group in its Muslim-dominated northwest that was plotting to kidnap foreign journalists, tourists and athletes during the Beijing Olympics.

A taciturn Rogge, visiting the host country four months before the Games begin, admitted he was "saddened" that these Olympics, dogged by protests over Tibet and calls for a boycott, were not simply a global celebration of sport.

It was "not the joyous party that we had wished it to be," Rogge said in Beijing, nevertheless insisting that the torch relay -- disrupted by protests in Greece, London, Paris and San Francisco -- would go on.

He also told a news conference that China -- under fire over a crackdown in Tibet and a host of other issues -- had promised that winning the right to host the Games would lead to an improvement in human rights.

"We definitely ask China to respect this moral engagement," he added.

Foreign ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu told reporters that Rogge's view of a "crisis" might have been exaggerated, and made it clear China would not engage in a discussion on its human rights performance.

"I believe IOC officials support the Beijing Olympics and adherence to the Olympic charter of not bringing in any irrelevant political factors," she said.

"I hope IOC officials continue to adhere to principles of the Olympic charter."

Attention to China's rights record intensified last month, when protests in Tibet against Chinese rule of the region erupted into violence and then spread to other areas of the country.

Exiled Tibetan leaders say more than 150 people were killed in the ensuing crackdown by China.

Beijing insists its security forces have killed no one while trying to quell the protests, but that Tibetan "rioters" killed 20 people.

However China sealed off the areas to foreign reporters and other independent monitors, and global rights groups have said they fear those detained by the authorities could face torture.

Beijing has repeatedly blamed the Dalai Lama, the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader, for the unrest -- and has insisted that scattered calls for a boycott should be ignored.

The Dalai Lama, on a visit to Japan, reiterated his belief that China had the right to host the Games but blamed Beijing for the unrest, saying there was no freedom of speech in his homeland.

"They really deserve" the Olympics, the Dalai Lama said. "In spite of the unfortunate events in Tibet, my position has not changed."

Pro-Tibet groups, human rights activists and other campaigners have shadowed the flame from the moment it was lit in Greece on March 24, starting its 20-country, 137,000-kilometre (85,000-mile) journey across the globe.

Protesters severely disrupted the torch relay this week in London and in Paris, where officials had to extinguish the flame several times.

There was no major trouble in San Francisco after organisers shortened the course for the only US leg and switched route at the last minute, disappointing thousands who had hoped to see the flame before its next stop in Buenos Aires.

Some rights groups and activists have said they fear that, rather than improving the situation, China is in fact using the Games as justification for cracking down even harder on its critics at home.

China's security chiefs said Thursday that they had broken two terrorist groups operating in its heavily Muslim northwestern region of Xinjiang, where there have lately also been reports of protests against the government.

"The violent terrorist group plotted to kidnap foreign journalists, tourists, and athletes during the Beijing Olympics and, by creating an international impact, achieve the goal of wrecking the Beijing Olympics," Ministry of Public Security spokesman Wu Heping said.

Subscribe to Trend in Google News! Subscribe
Expenditures of Azerbaijan's state budget for 9M2021 revealed
Expenditures of Azerbaijan's state budget for 9M2021 revealed
EU prioritizes digital sector development in Azerbaijan
EU prioritizes digital sector development in Azerbaijan
Russian company to implement micro-mobile transport project in Baku
Russian company to implement micro-mobile transport project in Baku
Loading Bars
Latest
Expenditures of Azerbaijan's state budget for 9M2021 revealed
U.S. drops tariff threat in digital tax transition deal with European countries
Sputnik V contributes to one bln coronavirus vaccinations in India
Israel to readmit COVID-vaccinated foreign tourists next month
Oil prices drop; Brent on track for first weekly dip in seven
Higher oil, natural gas prices to see some demand destruction
IsDB Institute Wins Again ‘Best Islamic Research Firm’ Award
1,742 more COVID-19 cases reported in Kazakhstan
Biden says does not want cold war with China
Chamber of Commerce head talks Iran's trade, tourism ties with Oman (Exclusive)
NATO ministers agree on defense plan, investment in innovation
Biden climate envoy Kerry to visit Saudi Arabia next week
Israel adds 5 cases of COVID-19 Delta variant "AY4.2"
Prop gun misfire kills woman on set of Alec Baldwin movie
EU leaders call for stepping up work on mutual recognition of vaccine certificates
Toronto says police not vaccinated by Nov 30 will be put on unpaid leave
British Queen cancels trip to spend night in hospital
World's biggest triceratops sells for $7.7 million in Paris
UK records more than 50,000 new coronavirus cases
Syria executes 24 people over deadly forest fires
Azerbaijan climbs to 26th place in UEFA coefficients table
Russia, China are friends in each other’s interests, not against others — Putin
Chronicles of Victory: First VP Mehriban Aliyeva interviewed by Trend News Agency on October 22, 2020
Chronicles of Victory: October 22, 2020
French PM pledges cash to help drivers cope with rising energy prices
Qarabag FC wins another victory at UEFA Conference League
Putin makes statement on Karabakh
Uzbek Central Bank: Food prices have risen by 14.4%
Georgian Parliament Speaker to meet Moldovan counterpart in Greece
Brussels' utopian green energy fantasies spark energy crisis in Europe — Hungarian PM
EU prioritizes digital sector development in Azerbaijan
Russia planning several new business visits to Azerbaijan by year-end - official
Russian company to implement micro-mobile transport project in Baku
First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva makes Instagram post on visit to Zangilan (VIDEO)
Azerbaijan Investment Holding, Kazakhstan National Welfare Fund sign memorandum of co-op
SOFAZ’s revenues from profitable oil and gas sale up
Executive Power of Azerbaijan’s Tovuz district opens tender for road repairs
Kazakhstan, Russia discuss gas supply issues
Russian company may set up 'smart' bus stops in Azerbaijan's liberated lands
Azerbaijan publishes updated list of servicemen martyred during second Karabakh war
IBF VP talks growing interest of investors in Azerbaijan's liberated lands (VIDEO)
SOFAZ sees increase in budget revenues
Uzbekistan's GDP growth in 9M2021 sparks promising forecast
Azerbaijan developing preliminary conceptual design of railway route to liberated Kalbajar (PHOTO)
Goldman Sachs, Freshfields working on possible Porsche IPO
Kazakhstan to liquidate emergency wells in several regions
Large-amount loans issued in Iran's services sector
Azerbaijan, Russia talk cooperation opportunities in insurance sector
Azerbaijan records surplus in state budget
Azerbaijan's Sumgayit Technologies Park, Alat FEZ sign MoU on strategic co-op
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens
Head of EU delegation talks financial aid to Azerbaijan, following end of Karabakh war
U.S. weekly jobless claims drop to 19-month low
Uzbek Central Bank publishes data on country's gold, currency reserves
Trade turnover between Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan grows sharply
FIMI buys Ashot Ashkelon stake from Elbit Systems for $88m
Azerbaijan confirms 2,005 more COVID-19 cases, 1,011 recoveries
Uzbek Central Bank reveals data on total liabilities of banks
Iran sees decrease in load/unload operations in Astara port
Kremlin hopes for EU certification of Russia's vaccine
Bahar Azadi gold coin price begins to rise in Iran
India enters 100-crore vaccine club to fight Covid, PM Modi says nation scripts history
Hungarian University Forum and alumni meeting in Baku
Central Bank of Iran shares data on loans issued for trade sector
Turkmenistan doubles greenhouse tomato exports to Russia
Turkey's position on opening Zangezur corridor - unchanged – President Erdogan
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for October 21
Georgia shares data on its top goods exported to Russia
Iran sees increase of cargo loading/unloading at its Charak port
Turkish President to attend opening of Azerbaijan’s Fuzuli International Airport
India offered humanitarian assistance to Afghans, Taliban say after 2nd meeting
'Turkic World' project aims to meet information demand - Turkish official
South Pars field revenues account for over half of Iran's state budget
Turkmenistan looks to launch new project jointly with UNDP, WB
Central Bank of Iran announces amount of loans issued in housing, construction sector
Turkmenistan interested in political stability, security in Afghanistan – Deputy FM
Iran’s CBI reveals amount of loans issued for industrial and mining sectors
India achieves the major milestone of ‘one billion’ vaccinations
Volume of loaded/unloaded cargo in Iran’s Fereidoonkenar port down
Ruling parties of Azerbaijan, Turkey to hold meeting
Iran records increase in exports to Uzbekistan
Iranian president to visit Ardabil Province on border with Azerbaijan
Uzbekistan reveals total assets for banks with/without state share
Every martyr will live forever in hearts of Azerbaijani people - President Ilham Aliyev
SOCAR discloses oil transportation volume via Baku-Supsa
Our people did not bow down during occupation, did not forget about their native lands - Azerbaijani president
Georgia-Russia trade turnover increases in 9M2021
Azerbaijan's military units in Kalbajar, Lachin undergo inspection amid coming winter (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Georgia shares data on COVID-19 cases for October 21
SOCAR’s capital investment plan fulfilled by over 63%
SOCAR reveals volume of electricity production, consumption
Iranian currency rates for October 21
Tesla's German plant hits snag as public consultation repeated
Iranian startup companies receive more loans from local banks
Activities in Iran’s Genaveh port increase
Egypt economy forecast to grow 5.1% in year to June, 5.5% in 2022/23
Pfizer vaccine very effective against Delta variant in adolescents in Israel
Iranians detained in Azerbaijan due to falsified of customs documents sent back to Iran
Exports of Iran to Tajikistan soar
Iran begins new round of power plant overhaul operations
All news