Upscale Beijing Hotels May Be Part of City-Wide Video Surveillance

BEIJING, Dec. 22_(Kyodo) - Beijing police will install security cameras in the Chinese capital's star-rated hotels as an anti-terrorism measure ahead of the 2008 Olympics, local media said Thursday.

As part of a city-wide security monitoring network, the Public Security Bureau wants to install the cameras in hotel hallways, entertainment venues and payment counters, the Beijing News reported, citing a bureau official who held a press conference Wednesday.

"The 2008 Beijing Olympics are getting closer every day," the newspaper said.

About 150 hotels with three stars or above operate in Beijing.

A manager at a five-star foreign-operated hotel in central Beijing said Thursday he had not heard of the camera plan. He doubted police have enough staff to monitor cameras in every hotel.

Shortly before U.S. President George W. Bush's visit to Beijing last month, police reported a threat of terrorist attacks on luxury hotels in China, prompting a warning from the U.S. Embassy to its citizens in China. China later said the threat was fabricated.

Hotel camera installation is part of a broader Public Security Bureau plan to install security cameras around the city, including at workplaces, the Beijing News said.

Security cameras have already been mounted at 21 key spots and caught more than 3,000 people trying to flee from crimes, the paper said.

<<Japan Economic Newswire -- 12/23/05>>