Chinese police roughed up a British TV crew and stopped them covering a pro-Tibet protest, witnesses said, in the latest case of interference with media freedom at the Beijing Olympic Games.
Uniformed police pounced on John Ray, China correspondent for Independent Television News (ITN), shortly after protesters unfurled a pro-Tibet banner near the main Olympic complex, witnesses and the reporter said.
His cameraman Ben England was also manhandled and prevented from filming the protest, they said.
Pro-Tibetan independence group Students for a Free Tibet said two protesters who unfurled the banner were arrested while six other members of the group were also detained for protesting nearby.
Ray said he was wrestled to the ground and dragged into a nearby restaurant where he was forcibly held down by uniformed and plainclothes officers who also stamped on his hands.
Ray, who is fully accredited to report in Beijing during the Olympic Games, said he was detained for around 20 minutes and his equipment bag was confiscated.
"This was an assault in my mind, I am incredibly angry about this," Ray told AFP minutes after he was released.