Foreign students banned from Beijing during Olympics?

China is not only making it hard for Chinese students to enjoy the Olympic games, there is also a yet not confirmed but widely circulated rumor that foreign students will be banned from Beijing, maybe even from China altogether, during the games.

Student Visa of the PR China
Student Visa of the PR China

As German newspapers like Die ZEIT and Süddeutsche Zeitung both report, there will be not student visas issued for July and August, a time where universities typically hold summer courses. In this time no regular classes will be held and students who only stay for one semester but according to the articles students who are going to continue their studies in the winter term need to leave for Beijing for games time. There are estimates that about 10,000 students would be affected by this measure.

And even if students do not need to stay over the holidays to proceed with their studies in Beijing afterwards, I think a lot of students like I myself would like to lengthen in China to watch the Olympics or feel its atmosphere if ons is in Beijing studying this or the coming winter term.

While the statement by a spokesperson of Peking University was quite clear, it nonetheless is not confirmed by the authorities yet. Robert Heuser of Cologne University assumed that the students are seen as potential troublemakers and are thus unwanted in the proximity of the games, he argued in an interview with Süddeutsche Zeitung.

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4 Responses to “Foreign students banned from Beijing during Olympics?”

  1. beijing07 Says:

    Update: According to a new article by Die ZEIT, the Chinese ministry of education foreign students do not have to leave Beijing or China during the games, however it remains unclear how visas can be prolonged for students who want to stay after the summer term e.g. in July or August and their visa expires at that time. See also (in German): http://www.zeit.de/online/2008/17/china-studenten

  2. Kawai Says:

    Hi Matt,

    Just to your information, there is also a ban on multiple entry visas to China in Hong Kong. Foreigners, like students or whoever holds no HK Identity Card need a visa to go to Mainland, in most of cases they would apply for a multiple entry visa so as to have a larger freedom of traveling between borders. But very recently the Immirgration office has stopped issuing the visa without making clearly the reason why. Some of my firends, who are exchange students at the moment in HK, are luckily enough to get a visa two months ago so they can still continue their plan of traveling in China during this summer, otherwise I guess they have to alter their plan.

  3. beijing07 Says:

    Thanks for the information! I had heard that HK visa issuing had undergone some changes before the games, as well, but I was not aware what kind of changes those were.
    Last year it was no problem for me to get a visa for China in HK, however, it only was a simple 30-day, single-entry tourist visa.

  4. Ponape Says:

    Somehow i missed the point. Probably lost in translation 🙂 Anyway … nice blog to visit.

    cheers, Ponape.

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