Yesterday, Chinese authorities revoked the visa of former Olympic gold medalist Joey Cheek, just hours before “he was set to travel to Beijing to promote his effort urging China to help make peace in the war-torn Darfur section of Sudan.” Today on Air Force One, White House Press Secretary Dana Perino told reporters that the administration is pushing the Chinese re-issue Cheek’s visa:
We were disturbed to learn that the Chinese had refused his visa. We are taking the matter very seriously. We have sent in our embassy in Beijing to démarche the Chinese. That is where we go in and we say we are concerned about this, and we want you to reconsider your actions. So we would hope that they would change their mind. And I’ll hopefully have more for you later, but we had to also wait for Washington to wake up to take any further action.