Olympic torch relay completes in Kuala Lumpur

April 21st, 2008 - 10:40 pm ICT by admin  

Kuala Lumpur, April 21 (DPA) The Beijing Olympic torch relay was completed Monday in Malaysia’s capital amid tight security as 80 athletes and local personalities took part in the 16.5-km run. The relay began at the historic Independence Square in the heart of the city and ended some four hours later at the Petronas Twin Towers.

In spite of a short spell of rain, hundreds of people - mostly dressed in red in support of China - gathered to watch the relay along the route and cheer the torch bearers as they passed.

About 1,000 police officers were deployed to ensure no anti-China protests marred the relay, Special Action Force formed a cordon around the runners throughout the route.

“We don’t foresee any problems in the torch relay today,” a police spokesman said.

However, he confirmed that police detained one Chinese monk and two Japanese nationals for attempting to cause disturbances before the torch relay began.

The spokesman said the suspects were merely detained as a precautionary measure and would be released after police questioned them.

The government of predominantly Muslim Malaysia had pledged to prevent any disruption to the torch relay, saying the sporting event should not be clouded over by politics.

Last month, Malaysia’s foreign ministry issued a statement saying that the government considers Tibet as an inalienable part of China.

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