Rights groups have asked some of the world’s largest broadcasters to drop plans to cover the Beijing Winter Olympics.
in a open letter More than 200 rights groups, including the Norwegian Tibet Commission and the Norwegian Uyghur Commission, have reported that broadcasters risk being “complicit” in “gross human rights violations” in China.
Rights groups represent China’s minorities: Uyghurs, Tibetans, Hong Kong residents, and others.
Among those who received the message was the American NBC. NBC is paying about $7.75 billion for the rights to the next six Olympic tournaments. According to the AP news agency, it is estimated at 40 percent of the income of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
The IOC has said on several occasions that it is just a sports body. President Thomas Bach did not want to address or condemn the treatment of Uighurs or other minorities in China.
The message comes a few days after the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo. Now the highlight is Beijing.
The IOC is facing boycott demands from several teams as well as sponsors and practitioners who have spoken critically.
Western countries, among other things, criticize China for its authoritarian path in Hong Kong, with pro-democracy activists imprisoned and a free press silenced. They also accuse the state of committing gross human rights violations against the Muslim Uyghur minority in the west of the country, and of settling in maritime areas claimed by other Asian countries.
In the letter, Ladon Tithong of the International Tibet Network states that “we observe television networks.”
– If they broadcast the Beijing Olympics in 2022, they would be complicit, she says.
The Chinese government has consistently denied these allegations, reiterating its denial of human rights abuses in Hong Kong and against Uyghurs in Xinjiang.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry also criticized the move, calling it “the politicization of sports.” The accusations of genocide of the Uyghurs by China have been referred to as the “lie of the century”.
Beijing was awarded the Winter Olympics in 2015. Both Oslo and Stockholm withdrew, and the IOC had two candidates remaining: Beijing and Almaty in Kazakhstan.
Members of the International Olympic Committee voted for Beijing by 44 votes to 40.
It is possible that the Olympics will be held without many spectators and with a large distance between athletes and journalists due to the Corona pandemic.
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