Olympic Protesting: What About Those “Protest Zones”?

From the cityweekend.com.cn:

If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

Similarly, if three special “protest zones” are created for the Olympics but no one has any information about them, do they really exist?

Apparently not. Beijing’s so-called “Protest Zones” were about as exciting as a slow day at an old folks home.

In an effort to appease its foreign critics, China announced in early August that it had designated three parks around Beijing as official protest areas for demonstrations approved by the government.

While some would-be activists condemned China for trying to isolate and contain free speech, protest zones have in fact been used at past Games, including the Salt Lake and Athens Olympics. What’s truly problematic about Beijing’s protest zones is the lack of detailed information provided by Chinese officials. Aside from the names of the protest sites, very little was given about what each zone consisted of and how would-be protesters could lawfully use them. City Weekend set out today to get the answers.

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August 12, 2008, 10:45 PM
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