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Olympic officials warn China on Net access

Beijing is notorious for the limits it places on who sees what on the Web. Ahead of this summer's games there, the IOC wants to ensure that journalists aren't hemmed in.

Inspectors for the International Olympic Committee are reminding China of its obligation to provide open Internet access to journalists attending this summer's games, according to a BBC news report.

Lenovo's Olympic torch
The Olympic torch, designed by Chinese PC maker Lenovo, is now alit and en route to the Summer Olympics. Lenovo

China, which will host the Olympic Games in Beijing in August, has a reputation of restricting Internet access to various Web sites, such as YouTube, which recently has served up video clips of unrest in Tibet, and to foreign news sites.

But under its contract with the International Olympic Committee, China is required to provide journalists with Internet access, according to the BBC report. The IOC expressed concern over China's Internet access, particularly following last month's protests over its handling of matters related to Tibet.

The unrest in Tibet, covered by a variety of news organizations, has led to calls to boycott the Olympic Games, according to a report in Associated Press.

"There was some criticism that the Internet closed down during events relating to Tibet in previous weeks--but this is not Games time," Kevan Gosper of the IOC told the BBC. "Our concern is that the press is able to operate as it has at previous Games during Games time."