US Calls for Diplomatic Boycott of Beijing Olympics, Citing Uyghur Genocide

On Monday, December 6, Jen Psaki, White House Press Secretary, announced that the US government had imposed a diplomatic boycott on Beijing. Psaki said, "the Biden Administration will not send any diplomatic or official representation to the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics and paralympic games."

Psaki cited China's ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity, especially in Xinjiang. The press secretary also relayed what Biden told China's president, Xi Jinping. "As the president (Biden) told president Xi, standing up for human rights is in the DNA of Americans," Psaki said slyly.

The spokesperson for the Chinese Mission to the United Nations criticized the US's move, accusing its western rival of politicizing sports. "The US just wants to politicize sports, create divisions and provoke a confrontation," the spokesperson said.

Psaki added that the US will not allow "US diplomatic or official representation would treat these games as business as usual in the face of the PRC's egregious human rights abuses and atrocities in Xinjiang." Not sending official representation "could send a clear message," she added.

Liu Pengyu, the spokesperson for Beijing's embassy in Washington, lashed out against the US's boycott, calling it a pretentious act and a political manipulation with no bearing on the success of the 2022 Winter Olympics.

"Such a pretentious act is only a political manipulation and a grave distortion of the spirit of the Olympic Charter," Pengyu said. "In fact, no one would care about whether these people come or not, and it has no impact whatsoever on the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics to be successfully held," he added.

Pengyu also explained that the diplomatic boycott was senseless and came out of nowhere because "no invitation has been extended to US politicians whatsoever."

Earlier this year, the US State Department formally accused the Chinese government of committing genocide. The former State Secretary, Mike Pompeo, called it an "ongoing systematic attempt to destroy Uighurs by the Chinese party-state."

Not surprisingly, the Biden administration's decision to diplomatically boycott the 2022 Winter Olympics hosted in Beijing gained full support from both aisles. Mitt Romney, a staunch republican senator from Utah, agreed with the Biden administration's "right to refuse."

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic congresswoman representing California's 12th district, said America and the rest of the world cannot support "holding the Olympics in a country perpetrating genocide and mass human rights violations."

US athletes can still travel and compete in the 2022 Winter Olympics.

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