Interview with torchbearer Jin Jing
Torchbearer Jin Jing (C) shares her story with Sohu.com.
At 12:30 p.m. (GMT +2), April 7, the fifth leg of the Beijing Olympic Torch Relay started from the Eiffel Tower in Paris. One eye-catching torchbearer was Jin Jing, a brave, young Chinese girl sponsored by worldwide Olympic partner Lenovo.
A handful of "pro-Tibet independence" activists attempted to disrupt the torch relay in Paris. They targeted Jin, who uses a wheelchair, and tried to grab the torch. Jin bravely held tightly to the torch amidst the unexpected attack, exhibiting a face full of pride. The scene touched everybody who witnessed it.
Jin arrived back in Beijing at 12:30 on April 9 and was brought, as a VIP, directly to Sohu's studio to share her experience with online viewers.
The host began the interview with a message from a netizen: "I saw a young torchbearer in her wheelchair, working hard to complete her task. Suddenly a man jumped from the roadside, trying to rob her of the torch ..."
The torchbearer is Jin Jing, a Paralympic fencing athlete.
Jin: Hi, I'm Jin Jing, a torchbearer sponsored by Lenovo for the global torch relay of the Beijing Olympics.
Host: Your experience made you very popular online. We are eager to hear you speak about what happened on April 7.
Jin: When the second torchbearer was accepting the flame from the first, I was waiting at my position as the third torchbearer. At the time the security around me was relatively light, there were only a few police officers and three, maybe two, escort runners around me. Several Tibetan separatists and members of "Reporters without Borders" came over to protest.
They began lunging towards me, trying to grab the torch from my hands. I tried to hide the torch with my body and managed to keep it from them. I was focused on the three or four separatists attacking me. I'm not sure how many were behind me. I felt people trying to take the torch from me. That's when some of the escort runners , as well as the tourist guide assigned to me in Paris, came over to help me, drawing the attackers away. People ask me how I dealt with the danger. I don't think I thought too much about it. I trusted the escorts around me. They were the ones, along with my guide, that faced the danger.
Host: You looked calm during the incident. Had you prepared for it? Did you expect that something like that might happen during the relay?
Jin: Yes, there had been reports on what was going on. In addition, on the previous night, I received a text message on my phone reminding me of what happened in London and telling me to be careful. I thought that as a wheelchair user, I was in a vulnerable position and I needed to make a stronger effort to protect the torch. I decided that whatever happens I should stand as a sportsperson and not allow the torch to be robbed from my hands. When we assembled, I was asked whether I wanted to hold the torch or place it onto a rack, I said I preferred to hold it, because I felt more secure this way. If I had used the rack, I think the torch could have been grabbed too easily.
August 8-24, 2008
- • The olympic torch Beijing relay news center
- • Contact Information of BOTR Community Task Forces
- • Timelines and Technical details to access Official TV signals of BOTR
- • Service Guide of Coverage of the Beijing Olympic Torch Relay for Media outside the Mainland of China