Saturday, April 28, 2007

Canada not part of Olympic torch route

Is this why Canada is not part of the Olympic torch route? Excerpt: But one China-watcher said frosty Beijing-Ottawa relations may have been a factor resulting in Vancouver's omission.

Vancouver, like San Francisco, has a huge ethnic Chinese population and would be a logical choice if Canada-China relations were strong, noted Wenran Jiang, a political scientist and acting director of the University of Alberta's China Institute.

"But I'm not surprised that no Canadians cities were included," Jiang said. "I think the colder relationship definitely is a factor which might have contributed to Canadian cities not being included."

Paul Evans, chairman of the Vancouver-based Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada, said the 2008 Beijing Olympics and 2010 Vancouver-Whistler Games appear to be "isolated" from bilaterial tensions. "It strikes me as unlikely" that China would deliberately snub Canada on the torch route, he said.

Spokesmen for Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay and Trade Minister David Emerson, minister responsible for the 2010 Games, referred media questions Friday to Canadian Heritage. But a spokeswoman in that department also dodged the issue. (more)
OLYMPIC WATCH: Human Rights in China and Beijing 2008

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