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United States announces diplomatic boycott of Beijing Games

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The United States announced Monday that no diplomatic representatives will be present at the 2022 Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, due to “ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang.”

No American diplomat at the Beijing Winter Olympics next February. Due to the human rights situation in this country, the White House confirmed, Monday, December 6, that the US government will not send official representatives to China. American athletes will participate well in the Olympics, which will take place from February 4 to 20, and will have all the support of the government, said White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki.

By being present, “the American diplomatic representation would treat these Games as if nothing had happened, despite the gross human rights violations and China’s atrocities in Xinjiang. And we simply cannot do that,” argued the Minister. White House spokesperson Jen Psaki.

“The presence of government officials and diplomats is a purely political decision for each government, which the IOC, in its political neutrality, fully respects,” responded a spokesperson for the International Olympic Committee. The body was also delighted that this “political” decision does not call into question the participation of American athletes.

A “genocide”

With this boycott, no representative of the United States government will attend the Olympics or Paralympics, but American athletes will compete well.

“The Team USA athletes have our full support. We will be 100% behind them while we cheer them on from here,” said Jen Psaki.

For its part, Beijing described the US decision as “political manipulation”. The Chinese embassy in Washington said no invitations were issued to U.S. officials anyway. “In fact, not everyone cares if these people are there or not, and it has no impact on the successful staging of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics,” the spokesperson said. embassy.

Before the officialization of the American decision, the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs had declared that American officials had to stop calling for a diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics if they wanted to avoid a deterioration of their relations with China. “If the United States persists in going through with this project, China will take firm countermeasures,” the ministry spokesman explained at a press conference.

For months, the US government had been looking for the best way to position itself with regard to the Winter Games, a popular and global event organized from February 4 to 20, 2022 by a country it accuses of perpetrating a “genocide” against Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang, northwest China.

Several human rights organizations accuse Beijing of having interned at least a million Muslims in Xinjiang in “re-education camps”.

With AFP and Reuters

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