Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Will China's Image Tarnish Games?

Olympic chief worries about China's image
BEIJING (AFP) - International Olympic Committee (IOC) chief Jacques Rogge praised Beijing's work on hosting the 2008 Olympics here but expressed concern about the world's image of China.

The IOC chief, on his first visit to Beijing since October last year, said that Beijing had done "magnificent" work towards staging a technically top quality Olympics.

"However, we should all remember that the Games are not judged solely by the technical proficiency of the project, but also through the perception that the world has of the Games," Rogge said in a speech.

"We must therefore ensure that while all the technical elements are in place, that we do not forget to look after the less tangible elements that will ultimately shape the world's image of China and the Beijing Games."...

Rogge did not elaborate on his concerns about the world's perception of China. However, Beijing's image has been hurt since his last visit here by concern over human rights and reports of a crackdown on media freedom ahead of the Games.


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