Olympic flame ceremony interrupted by Tibet protesters

March 24, 2008 |  by  |  Breaking News, Sports
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Olympic torch ceremony protestedIt is a ceremony that dates back to ancient Olympia, the lighting of the Olympic Games torch. Held yesterday in Greece in anticipation for this summer’s China-hosted Olympics, the ceremony was brought to a temporary halt by protesters objecting to China‘s treatment of Tibet.

The protesters were urging a worldwide boycott of the upcoming games as a proper response to the Chinese government crackdown on Tibet and their allies within mainland China. The group unfurled a banner featuring the Olympic rings as handcuffs before being pulled away by Greek police. The Paris-based Reporters Without Borders made their presence felt as three of their members were arrested.

As Liu Qi, president of the Chinese organizing committee was giving a speech to thousands in a ceremony that has been repeated for millennia, the group began their loud chants. Immediately following the banner unfurling, a Tibetan woman covered herself in red paint in front of the first Olympic flame runner.

Greek television carried the scene live while Chinese television quickly cut away to a pre-recorded segment.


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