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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 September 2006, 04:56 GMT 05:56 UK
China 'failed human rights vow'
Billboard paintings promoting the 2008 Beijing Olympics
Amnesty called for the IOC to exert pressure on China
China has failed to live up to its promise to improve its human rights record ahead of the 2008 Olympic Games, Amnesty International has said.

A report by the group said human rights activists in the country continue to be harassed while those facing the death penalty are not getting fair trials.

It also said people are being forced from their homes to make way for Olympic construction projects.

Amnesty International called on the Chinese authorities to enact reforms.

"Serious human rights violations continue to be reported across the country, fuelling instability and discontent," the report said.

"Grassroots human rights activists continue to be detained and imprisoned, and official controls over the media and the internet are growing tighter."

'Too soon'

Amnesty also called on the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to exert pressure on the Chinese government.

However, a spokesperson for the IOC said it was "unrealistic to expect the IOC to pressure on such complex matters".

"It is premature to say China has failed to live up to the promises two years before the Games," communications director Giselle Davies told Reuters news agency.

During bidding for the Games in 2001, the Beijing committee pledged that a win for China would help promote the development of human rights in the country.

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