Anger has spread over the holding of the Olympics in China

Dawa Kyab

The awarding of the 2022 Winter Olympics to Beijing remains as controversial as the awarding of the 2008 Summer Games to the Chinese capital, except that this time a large number of democratic countries have announced a diplomatic boycott of the world sporting event.

Several hundred Tibetans and their allies have staged protests around the world as well as in front of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland, accusing the IOC of complicity in the “atrocities” committed against the ethnic minorities in the People’s Republic of China.

“Beijing Olympics, Genocide Games”, “Tibet is burning” and “Long live the Dalai Lama” were some of the slogans shouted by protesters.. Placards carried by protesters included calls such as “Save Tibet” and “No more bloody games,” U.S. Congressman Tom Suozzi joined a protest rally outside the Chinese consulate in New York, where he said that Tibetans should continue their struggle for their country.

Reuters (February 4) quoted British freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy questioning China’s ability to stage the 2022 Winter Olympics and urging the IOC not to allow countries that have “appalling positions on human rights” to host the Games. China should never have been allowed to host these games. Shame on the CCP and IOC said Students for a Free Tibet. Buchung D Sonam, a Tibetan activist from Europe said that if you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.

During a rally, Giovanni Vassallo, president of the Bay Area Friends of Tibet, described (February 3) the 2022 Chinese Winter Olympics as a sporting event of genocide. He said that we will continue to ask the world not to turn a blind eye to the incredible destruction that has affected the lands and people of Tibet, East Turkestan as well as the followers of Falun Gong and Chinese democratic groups.

Another activist Te Nam from Europe said (4 February) that as the Winter Olympics opened today in Beijing, I am thinking of that day in July 2001 when the IOC announced in Moscow that the China would host the 2008 Olympics. The Tibetan Youth Congress and other Tibetan groups in Moscow protested and were arrested by Russian police. I remember waiting with some of my colleagues in Dharamshala – with two statements ready to go – hoping against all odds that China would not be the host. Almost 14 years have passed since the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. During these intervening years, the Chinese regime committed serious and widespread human rights violations in Tibet. Since 2008 in Tibet, we still do not know the exact number of people imprisoned for having demonstrated in 2008. Many are still in prison. Hundreds of Tibetan writers, singers and community leaders have been arrested or disappeared. Repression in Tibet due to general tightening of restrictions on Buddhism and the Tibetan language and forced assimilation. So once the spotlight of the Olympics goes out, I wonder what will happen to the peoples colonized by China

The United States was the first country to announce a diplomatic boycott of the Olympics, followed by countries like the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia, among others. At February 6, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi testified before the Congressional Executive Commission on China (CECC) about the ongoing Beijing Olympics and criticized the host for its human rights abuses. man in Tibet, East Turkestan, Southern Mongolia, Hong Kong, among others. . Pelosi said the IOC, aided by corporate sponsors, had turned a blind eye to the host nation’s actions. “If we don’t speak out against human rights violations in China due to business interests, we lose all moral authority to speak out against human rights violations anywhere,” she added. .

Earlier, in an online chat with Xi Jinping, US President Biden raised (November 16, 2021) concerns about PRC practices in Xinjiang, Tibet, and Hong Kong, as well as human rights. man more broadly. Separately, Sikyong Penpa Tsering of the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) accused (November 26, 2021) China of implementing a “one nation, one party, one language, one culture” policy in occupied Tibet and said that Tibetans as a people and as a culture were subject to a slow death.

The same points were made in January 2022 by NBA player Enes Kanter who expressed strong resentment towards the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics pointing out that Tibet belongs to the Tibetans and that under the Chinese domination, Tibetans are denied the right to learn the Tibetan language and are prohibited from free movement.

While countries are participating in the Beijing Olympics, they do not trust the Chinese authorities (Chinese surveillance), some have even advised their athletes not to bring their personal electronic devices to Beijing. After the start of the Beijing Olympics, travel restrictions are intensified in a few regions of Tibet, including Lhasa, its capital. Temples and monasteries as well as tourist places in Tibet are closed. Bodies like the IOC compromise moral values ​​by ignoring the issue of human rights.