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"As long as human rights are violated, there can be no foundation for peace. How can peace grow where speaking the truth is itself a crime?"

China: Hosting Olympics a Catalyst for Human Rights Abuses

August 24, 2008

IOC and World Leaders Fail to Challenge Great Leap Backward for Rights in China
Human Right Watch
August 22, 2008

New York, Aug 22 -- The hosting of the 2008 Beijing Olympics has set
back the clock for the respect of human rights in the People's
Republic of China, Human Rights Watch said ahead of the Games'
closing ceremony in Beijing on Sunday, August 24. Over the past year
Human Rights Watch has monitored and documented extensive human
rights violations directly linked to the preparation and the hosting
of the Games.

"The 2008 Beijing Games have put an end -- once and for all -- to the
notion that these Olympics are a 'force for good,'" said Sophie
Richardson, Asia advocacy director at Human Rights Watch. "The
reality is that the Chinese government's hosting of the Games has
been a catalyst for abuses, leading to massive forced evictions, a
surge in the arrest, detention, and harassment of critics, repeated
violations of media freedom, and increased political repression."

Jacques Rogge, president of the International Olympic Committee
(IOC), told Reuters in August 2007 that, "We believe the Games are
going to move ahead the agenda of the social and human rights as far
as possible, the Games are going to be a force for good."

"Not a single world leader who attended the Games or members of the
IOC seized the opportunity to challenge the Chinese government's
behavior in any meaningful way," Richardson said. "Will anyone
wonder, after the Games are over, why the Chinese government remains
intransigent about human rights?"
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