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HOME  > Past issues  > 2022 February 16 - 22  > Beijing Winter Olympics closes amid criticism over China's human rights abuses
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2022 February 16 - 22 TOP3 [WORLD]

Beijing Winter Olympics closes amid criticism over China's human rights abuses

February 22, 2022

Akahata editorial (excerpts)

The Beijing Winter Olympics closed on February 20 amid international criticism over human rights abuses by the Chinese government. The International Olympic Committee (IOC), however, served to defend the Chinese government. The depth of the doping issue also came into relief.

The Olympic Charter calls for "promoting a peaceful society concerned with the preservation of human dignity". The current situation in China conflicts with this principle. China's suppression of ethnic minorities in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and its crackdown on the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong are serious human rights violations.

The IOC in March 2020 published "Recommendations for an IOC Human Rights Strategy" in which the IOC refers to the seriousness of the human rights situation in China, but it did not take any concrete action to have China comply with the recommendations.

The Beijing 2022 Organizing Committee announced its policy of punishing athletes whose remarks or behaviors challenge Chinese laws and rules. However, the IOC did not say anything about this.

Doping not only undermines the fairness of competitions but also harms athletes physically and mentally. Since Russia faces sanction due to its systematic doping, only Russian athletes who met certain requirements were able to participate in the Games as independent competitors. Despite that, a doping problem arose. The absence of IOC's resolute stance against doping is a factor that delays solving the issue.

The Olympic Games where human rights are downplayed and where for-profit commercialism and the enhancement of national prestige are spreading will increase public distrust of the Olympics itself. Many athletes are expressing their hopes for improvement. Holding of the Olympics should go back to Olympism's original principle - the preservation of "human dignity".

Past related article:
> IOC should encourage China to abide by Olympic Charter and end human rights abuses [February 2, 2022]
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