tirsdag 14. desember 2021

How much does the diplomatic boycott of Beijing 2022 matter?

While concern over human rights has become almost a constant theme in international sport in recent years, few hosts of major events have provoked quite as much controversy as Beijing. The venue for the 2022 Winter Olympics has been hit by a flurry of diplomatic boycotts from countries including the US, Australia, and Britain, because of widespread allegations of Chinese atrocities against the Uyghur community. Human rights groups and Western governments have accused China of genocide in the Xinjiang region. China denies this, saying its network of detention camps there is for "re-education" of the Uyghurs and other Muslims.

Relations are also strained over a crackdown on political freedoms and pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong, and more recently concerns over tennis player Peng Shuai, who disappeared from public view after she accused a top Chinese government official of sexual assault. Although the Chinese authorities have criticised "malicious speculation" over her case, there remains significant concern about her.