Amnesty claims its website is being blocked

JOURNALISTS working from the Olympics press centre in Beijing are unable to access amnesty.org, the Amnesty International website, the organisation claimed today.

A number of other websites are also reported to have been blocked, they claimed.

It comes as Amnesty International prepares to launch a new report evaluating the Chinese authorities’ human rights performance in the run-up to the Olympics.

It is embarrassing to the International Olympic Committee, who had highlighted the loosening of restrictions on foreign media in China as an example of an improvement in human rights brought about by the hosting of the Olympics.

Earlier this month Jaques Rogge, the  IOC President, had claimed that “there will be no censorship on the internet.”

“The Olympics Countdown: Broken Promises” is due to be published online today at 21:00 GMT, Tuesday 29 July at 05:00am Hong Kong time.

It is the follow-up to “China: The Olympics Countdown: Crackdown on Activists Threatens Olympic Legacy” which was released in April this year, the new report claims to show that there has still been little progress towards fulfilling the Chinese authorities’ promise to improve human rights, but rather continued deterioration in key areas.