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Chinese security to shadow local torch relay -

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LISA MILLAR: Kevin Rudd said the tracksuit-wearing Chinese security members wouldn't be part of the
Australian leg of the Olympic torch relay but it appears they are coming along anyway.

Australia's most senior Olympic official, Kevan Gosper, has today revealed Chinese security will be
closely following the flame in a bus while Australian security runs with the torch bearers.

It is a compromise that Australian officials have agreed to in the hope of avoiding the
altercations with pro-Tibet demonstrators that have dogged the relay in other parts of the world.

There has already been an angry response to the use of Chinese security as Karen Barlow reports.

KAREN BARLOW: The IOC has been prepared for torch relay protests, but Australian IOC official,
Kevan Gosper has told ABC local radio, he's been shocked by the level of pro-Tibet passion.

KEVAN GOSPER: The ferocity of Paris in particular where some of the protesters were even trying to
whip the torch out of the hands of a young Paralympic girl were very, very worrying and the risk
there is injury and violence and yes, we were very disconcerted.

KAREN BARLOW: The IOC is forging ahead with the torch relay regardless of recent protests but the
sight of tracksuit-wearing Chinese guards surrounding the Olympic torch bearers and the way they
tackled protesters, has not been good for the image of the Beijing Games.

The Chinese guards are not your average escort - they are actually highly trained paramilitary
police.

After the London relay the 2012 Olympics chief Sebastian Coe was overheard describing them as
"thugs".

And that led Australia's Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, while in Britain, to rule them out of next
week's Canberra relay.

KEVIN RUDD: We will not be having Chinese security forces or the Chinese security services
providing security for the torch when it's Australia. We, Australia, will be providing that
security.

What Olympic officials the Chinese bring to Canberra is a matter for them but on the security
front, we will be providing that security.

KAREN BARLOW: But it turns out that means the Chinese security are only taking a step or two back
from the torch.

Kevan Gosper has told the ABC's Jon Faine that the Chinese security will be there as back up.

KEVAN GOSPER: The security people from China - they call themselves the torch protectors will be
there but they'll be in a bus behind the event and would only be called upon if there was really
serious trouble.

JON FAINE: What does serious trouble mean?

KEVAN GOSPER: That will be a judgement of the security people in Canberra.

JON FAINE: Australian or Chinese?

KEVAN GOSPER: Australian. The charge and responsibility for security is absolutely in the hands of
Australian authorities or any of the national authorities.

KAREN BARLOW: If there is trouble and the Australian security needs help, the Chinese security will
leave the bus and join in.

KEVAN GOSPER: I don't think that is good and I don't think it will happen.

KAREN BARLOW: Talkback reaction has been critical of Kevan Gosper and IOC.

TALKBACK CALLER: Mr Gosper you sound very much like an apologist, not only for China but for
rampant capitalism that the Olympics has become. I'm tired of the torch being told that it is about
a symbol about peace and goodwill and human rights. There are no human rights in China.

TALKBACK CALLER 2: They do not understand what human rights are. They are not political. They are
human rights that every person should have.

TALKBACK CALLER 3: The torch is very much a symbol of what the Olympics are about and the flame is
a symbol of what the Olympics are about. I think we have a moral obligation to extinguish that
flame."

KAREN BARLOW: Which left Kevan Gosper to defend his job as an international sports administrator.

KEVAN GOSPER: I do reject the claim that I am an apologist for China. I am an international person
who has been given an education in the United States and I worked in a commercial organisation that
had me in Western Europe and in the Pacific Islands. I've been an International Olympic Committee
person since 1977 and given the benefit of seeing other people's side of the argument as well as
our own.

So whether you agree with me or not agree with me, and I've been sympathetic with your views, I
still think the torch relay is a symbolism for peace, goodwill and understanding. I am hopeful that
it will be peaceful in Canberra and I am looking forward to a great games in Beijing.

KAREN BARLOW: Protesters are adamant that they are planning peaceful actions in Canberra and the
Chinese security will be staying on the bus. Paul Bourke from the Australian Tibet Council.

PAUL BOURKE: Well it is good that it is the Australians decision. We're pretty confident that they
won't be needed. Everyone that we've spoken to is planning peaceful protests and we don't know of
anyone with intentions to disrupt the relay in any way so hopefully they won't be needed.

LISA MILLAR: That's Paul Bourke from the Australian Tibet Council ending that report from Karen
Barlow.