April 18, 2008


Demonstrators Gather in India to Protest Truncated Olympic Torch Relay (Emily Wax and Rama Lakshmi, 4/17/08, Washington Post)

Tens of thousands of pro-Tibetan demonstrators gathered across India Thursday to protest the Olympic torch relay, facing off with a massive show of security mobilized to ensure the flame's "harmonious journey" to Beijing could proceed.

A 70-person relay team of Indian athletes and celebrities carried the torch on a truncated, two-mile run through the city's colonial-era government center -- a part of town that had been closed to traffic and emptied of people to protect the flame's symbolic journey toward the start of the Olympic Games in August.

Hundreds, including at least 150 Tibetans, were arrested or detained in at least four different cities, including a group held by police in New Delhi after storming the hotel where the torch was housed. Another 30 were hustled away by police from in front of the Chinese consulate in Mumbai. Along with demonstrations in New Delhi and Mumbai, an estimated 30,000 had gathered in Bangalore and thousands more in the Hindu spiritual capital of Varanasi to protest China's human rights record and its treatment of Tibet.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 18, 2008 12:00 AM
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