sharing the Olympic spirit

FBI chief 'impressed' with Beijing Olympics security
Updated: 2008-01-30 14:33


BEIJING - The head of the FBI said Wednesday that China's security preparations for this summer's Beijing Olympics were impressive and that his agency was lending its expertise on fending off possible terrorist attacks.

During a three-day visit to Beijing, FBI Director Robert Mueller was briefed by the police, paramilitary and counterintelligence agencies in charge of security for the August games. He toured Olympic venues in the Chinese capital for a firsthand look at the preparations.

Mueller told reporters that he "was impressed by the thoroughness of the preparations and the professionalism that is being put in to provide security for the games."

China's generally secretive police agencies have sought advice on Olympic security from the U.S., Germany, Israel and other foreign governments. But the cooperation puts the FBI in a bind.

In his brief remarks to reporters, Mueller said the areas where the two governments will cooperate are: the Olympics, terrorism, computer crimes and corruption.

"Both countries face threats from terrorism, face threats from cyber-crime, hackers and the like and so my discussions with my counterparts here have discussed those areas where we have mutual concerns," Mueller said.

On the Olympics, the FBI has previously advised host cities on security, and Mueller said similar support was being given to Beijing. Much of the discussions, he said, centered on "securing Olympic venues from attacks principally from terrorists."

The FBI began posting a liaison agent in Beijing in 2002 and China later began doing the same in Washington.

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