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No calls for Beijing Games boycott: IOC

March 18, 2008 14:12 IST

No governments have called for a boycott of the Beijing Olympic Games over China's crackdown on protests in Tibet, International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge said on Monday.

"There have been absolutely no calls for a boycott, neither emanating from governments, and we have been very heartened by the position of the European Union and the major governments of the world who have all said almost unanimously that boycotts will not be a solution," Rogge said in Trinidad.

Tibet has been rocked by protests by opponents to Chinese rule and a crackdown by police and troops.

Pro-Tibet demonstrators will stage a protest outside the IOC's Swiss headquarters on Tuesday and call on the IOC to block plans for the Olympic torch to pass through the region, Tibet Olympic Committee spokesman Kelsang Gope said.

Gope said the demonstrators would march with banners stating "Mr Rogge, your silence is killing Tibetans."

The United States and the European Union called on China to exercise restraint while the United Nations expressed concerns. The European Union also said a boycott of the Beijing Games would not be the right answer.

"From the world of sports there has been absolutely no call for boycott whatsoever," Rogge, who is on a week-long tour of the Caribbean, added in a brief interview in the Trinidadian capital.

"We are in contact with the organization of the Beijing Games on a daily basis. Every day we are in contact with them but the International Olympic Committee has to deal with sports, does not have to deal with politics," Rogge said.

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