Even a few days before the lockdown, there were political debates about the Beijing Olympics after a Chinese official dismissed allegations of abuse against the Muslim Uyghur population as a “lie”.
Beijing Olympics spokesman Yan Tsiarong said Taiwan is part of China. Although Taiwan is a democratic and self-governing country, Beijing considers it part of its territory. Over the past year, China has intensified its efforts to isolate the island from its international allies.
The International Olympic Committee has repeatedly stated that the Games should be apolitical.
January said then that IOC spokesman Mark Adams was asked at a press conference if Taiwan would attend the closing ceremony on Sunday. “There is only one China,” said a Chinese spokesperson.
He later intervened when a reporter asked the IOC whether materials from Xinjiang were used for clothing. In fact, human rights groups have accused some textile companies of sourcing their materials from Xinjiang, ignoring the repressive measures against Uyghurs in the region. Jan Zsiarong said:
Washington has announced a diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics, citing allegations of treatment of Uyghurs. Several other countries later joined the United States, including New Zealand, Australia, the United Kingdom, Japan and Canada, and announced that they would not send diplomatic representatives to the Games.
China justifies the imprisonment of members of the Uyghur Muslim religious minority by fighting terrorism. More than a million people have been arrested in recent years after carrying out a small number of severe bombings and knife attacks. Many Uyghurs were sent to re-education camps, where, in addition to brutal torture, they were often beaten literally in the sense of being good Chinese.
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