Diplomatic boycott of Winter Olympics: A message to China from the West

Diplomatic boycott of Winter Olympics: A message to China from the West

Tension between China and the Western allies has escalated with Canada and the United Kingdom following the US and Australia’s diplomatic boycott of the Winter Olympics. France said it would consult its European allies on the boycott call.

The US and the European countries announcing diplomatic boycott of the Winter Olympics in China have criticised the Chinese Communist Party (CPC), the ruling party in the country, alleging human rights violations in Xinjiang.

China has been under attack from human rights activists and the international community over alleged mistreatment of the ethnic Uyghur community, a Muslim minority in the country mostly concentrated in Xinjiang.

The Chinese capital, Beijing, will host the Winter Olympics in February 2022. The diplomatic boycott of the event began with the US becoming the country to take the lead.

What is a diplomatic boycott?

Typically, a country’s delegation participating in a sporting event includes several government officials, though athletes are the centre of attraction. A diplomatic boycott means that the non-athlete members don’t take part in the sporting event.

The countries that have announced a diplomatic boycott of China will therefore not send their non-athlete officials in the delegation participating in the Winter Olympics from February 4-20 next year.

The athletes from these countries will still travel and take part in the Winter Olympic Games. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach has welcomed the move to send athletes to the Winter Olympics despite the governments deciding to send a message to China.


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