FM Yang Jiechi Says Anti-China Forces Politicise Olympics

BEIJING: China’s Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi said anti-China forces were bent on politicising the Olympics, but he vowed they would never succeed.

Yang said foreign governments and individuals had demonstrated “profound friendship” for China by supporting the August 8-24 Beijing Games.

“It is not the international community that is politicising the Olympic Games,” he said.

“It is a small number of individuals and forces who are anti-China and very biased against China.”

Yang did not name the anti-China forces, but activists have been using the Games to press China over a range of issues, including human rights, religious freedom, its controversial rule of Tibet and its involvement in Darfur.

Yang said China was open to criticism and welcomed suggestions on how to ensure the success of the Olympics – as long as they were offered in the spirit of goodwill.

But he added that “those people out to tarnish China’s image… will never get away with it because what they are doing is opposed by the people of China and people around the world”.

He also rejected suggestions that the Chinese government itself was politicising the Games by using them as a tool to stir up nationalism.

“Patriotism and politicising the Olympic Games are two different things,” he said.

“I think that any fair-minded person with an objective view would admit that the support the Chinese people have demonstrated to the Olympic Games is absolutely sincere and from the bottom of their hearts,” he said.

– AFP/so

Channel News Asia

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