Saturday, April 10, 2021

The United States denies that it wants to boycott the Olympic Winter Games in Beijing

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The White House cut short, Wednesday, April 7, to speculation on a boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics (OG) next year, ensuring that there was, at this stage, no consultation between the States -United and their allies on this issue.

“We have not had discussions and we are not discussing any boycott with allies and partners”White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.

Sign of emotion in the sporting world, the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) reaffirmed, Wednesday, through the voice of its president, Susanne Lyons, its opposition to the boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics in February 2022, demanded in particular by associations for the defense of human rights.

“For our athletes, the only dream is to represent the United States of America”, said Mme Lyons, the president of the USOPC, at the opening of a meeting with the press devoted to athletes qualified for the 2020 Summer Olympics, in Tokyo. “We do not believe that the young athletes who belong to the United States team should be used as pawns on the political spectrum”, she insisted.

“We certainly don’t want to downplay what is happening with human rights in China”, assured the patron saint of American sport, “But the United States has several tools to respond constructively to these questions which we believe need to be handled by government officials”.

Read also Uighurs victims of forced labor in China’s cotton fields, report says

The treatment of Uighurs described as “genocide”

The USOPC’s position comes as no surprise, but this clarification was expected since statements the day before by State Department spokesman Ned Price. “This is something we definitely want to discuss”, he assured, questioned whether the United States was considering a joint boycott with its allies.

Several associations and Republican politicians are calling for an American boycott, a movement that concerns other countries, such as Canada or the Netherlands, in the face of what the head of American diplomacy, Antony Blinken, describes as “Genocide” to evoke the treatment of the Uighurs, using the expression dear to his predecessor, Mike Pompeo.

Beijing reacted to the accusations on Wednesday, calling them “Lie of the century”, promising that they would be the subject of a “Vigorous response”.

Read also Repression of Uighurs: US deputies call for sanctioning Beijing

The World with AFP

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