Beijing: Chinese police have mounted pressure on foreign reporters, warning them to stay away from spots designated for Middle East-inspired protests and threatened the scribes with either expulsion or even revoking their credentials.

Staff from The Associated Press, Agence France-Presse and numerous other overseas news organisations were called in for videotaped meetings with Beijing police on Thursday. They were told that reporters trying to film or interview near the proposed demonstration spots in Beijing or Shanghai this weekend will be punished.

The Foreign Correspondents' Club of China said that some journalists were accused "of trying to help stir up a revolution, disrupt harmony in China and simply cause trouble."

However, a British broadcast journalist, who declined to be named in line with company policy, said her team was told that it was not allowed to film anywhere in China, including basic street scenes, without prior approval.