PARIS – Moves to punish
Hollywood actor and Tibet activist Richard Gere Saturday called for a boycott of the Beijing Olympic Games if China “does not act in the proper way” in handling protests in the Himalayan region.
(AFP/Getty Images/File/Jim McIsaac)
(AP Photo/Keystone, Dominic Favre)
Such a protest by world leaders would be a huge slap in the face for China’s Communist leadership.
‘s outspoken foreign minister, former humanitarian campaigner Bernard Kouchner, said the idea “is interesting.”
Kouchner said he wants to discuss it with other foreign ministers from the 27-nationnext week. His comments opened a crack in what until now had been solid opposition to a full boycott, a stance that Kouchner said remains the official government position.
The idea of skipping the Aug. 8 opening ceremony “is less negative than a general boycott,” Kouchner said. “We are considering it.”
Asked about Kouchner’s statement, China’s U.N. Ambassadorsaid: “Certainly I think what he said is not shared by most of the people in the world.”
Jacques Rogge said last month that he expects many heads of state — including , and — to attend the opening ceremony.