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Page last updated at 18:40 GMT, Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Henin wants no politics at Games

Justine Henin
Henin won gold at the Athens Olympics four years ago

World number one Justine Henin believes politics and sport should not mix at this year's Beijing Olympics.

Over the weekend it was reported that British Olympians would be prevented from making political comment at the Games in August. Belgium's Henin said: "Politics and sport must remain separate.

"Athletes must be focused on our job which is sport, which is our passion. We all hope to bring joy to the people watching the Games."


China has been criticised for its human rights record and it is feared that some athletes, and possibly political activists, will use the event to make demonstrate against the Chinese government.

Henin, who won gold at Athens four years ago, added: "I'm of course concerned about the politics surrounding the Games, but I'm going there to play tennis not play politics.

"Winning in Athens gave me so much pleasure. The Olympics is very high for me in 2008."

Henin recorded a straight sets win over France's Amelie Mauresmo to win her gold medal at Athens.

see also
Team GB for Beijing
29 Nov 07 |  Team GB
Tennis on the BBC
09 Dec 07 |  Tennis
Olympic gag row leads to review
11 Feb 08 |  Olympics
Beijing decision defended by IOC
08 Feb 08 |  Olympics
China admits Games worker deaths
28 Jan 08 |  Asia-Pacific
Olympics stir mixed emotions in China
02 Jan 08 |  Asia-Pacific
Gold for Henin-Hardenne
21 Aug 04 |  Tennis

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