MPs urge British Olympians to boycott 2022 Beijing Winter Games

Senior political figures have actually called for British athletes to boycott next year’s Winter Olympics in Beijing in action to prevalent human rights abuses in China.

Ed Davey, the leader of the Liberal Democrats, and Labour MP Chris Bryant, a member of the foreign affairs choose committee and a previous junior foreign minister, stated the federal government and the British Olympic Association need to act.

” The evidence that a genocide is now taking place in western China is so clear that the UK and the whole world must now withstand Beijing and utilize every available tool to stop it,” Davey stated.

The BBC reported last week that ethnic Uighur women and other Muslims in the western province of Xinjiang were being methodically raped and tortured. The previous United States secretary of state Mike Pompeo said before leaving workplace last month that China was committing ongoing genocide versus the Uighurs, a declaration backed by the Biden administration.

The UN Genocide Convention lists eliminating children, preventing births, killing members of a group, seriously hurting them or putting them in conditions determined to destroy them as evidence of genocide.

Bryant said: “All 5 classifications of genocide behaviour, according to the Genocide Convention, are currently in play in Xinjiang province. So I think it’s simply extraordinary that the British government appears to have no backbone about it.

” I just can’t see why any person would wish to go to the Winter Olympics in Beijing. And I believe the British Olympic Association need to be requiring the Winter Olympics to move, and if it does not move, then we need to be boycotting it.”

Davey said the UK had actually permitted its sports stars to be used for propaganda in the past, such as when the England football group was instructed to offer a Nazi salute in 1935.

” No doubt we will hear teams, sponsors and governing bodies say the Olympics and Paralympics ought to be separate from politics and that they are simply focusing on sport. However in the face of genocide, that just isn’t sufficient,” Davey stated.

” The 2022 Winter Season Olympic and Paralympic Games will be used as a propaganda tool for a program devoting genocide. Group GB, ParalympicsGB and the government have an ethical responsibility to think about if sending a group to these Games is really the best thing to do.”

He said that unless the Chinese government ordered the closure of detention camps in Xinjiang, ended Uighur forced labour and ethnic cleaning, stopped sterilising Uighur ladies and stopped the abuse and rape of Uighurs, then Team GB, ParalympicsGB and ministers ought to announce a boycott. “Our brightest and best professional athletes must not be required to be part of a propaganda exercise for the Chinese Communist party while it attempts to clean the Uighur individuals off the face of the world.”

Last week, a group of 180 human rights groups required a boycott, stating that the International Olympic Committee’s hope that granting China the Games in 2015 would spark progress had actually been wrong.

China’s human rights record worsened after the 2008 Beijing summertime Games because the nation’s management ended up being “pushed”, the group stated.

Fewer athletes participate in the Winter Olympics than during the summertime Games and a higher percentage come from richer nations.

Dominic Raab, the foreign secretary, told the foreign affairs select committee last October that a UK boycott of the Games was possible. The former Conservative leader Iain Duncan Smith has actually also called for a boycott.

China has rejected there are any abuses in Xinjiang.

Sir Hugh Robertson, the chairman of the British Olympic Committee, stated last year that Olympic boycotts did not work and only damaged the professional athletes who could not take part. British runners Sebastian Coe and Steve Ovett won gold medals at the 1980 Moscow Games after defying a federal government boycott.

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