Media freedom at Beijing 2008

Organisers said on Wednesday that foreign media will be free to travel around China and have uncensored internet access during the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

A new national stadium is under construction for Beijing 2008
A new national stadium is under construction for Beijing 2008

Currently, non-Chinese journalists require permission to travel around China while websites that contain material which is considered sensitive are often blocked by the Chinese government.


Liu Qi, president of the Beijing Organising Committee for the Olympic Games (BOCOG), said rules would be changed in time for the games of the 29th Olympiad.


“The latest legislation is going through the necessary procedures,” Liu said.


“These new rules will consider the norms of the past Games and the needs of the media.


“The Chinese government will honour our promises and commitments made during our bid to host the Games.”


Li Jingbo, head of media services said the internet service provided to journalists and news broadcasters at Beijing 2008 would be uncensored, while Sun Weijia, BOCOG’s head of media operations stressed that there would be no limitations on travel inside China for journalists during the Games.


“We have no restrictions on travel for foreign journalists in China,” Sun told the Olympic World Press Briefing on Wednesday.


“So once they get the visa, they can travel anywhere in China.”


The first World Press Briefing preparing media for the coverage of the 2008 Olympic Games took place on Wednesday.

Source : Reuters

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