“The Biden Administration will not send any diplomatic or official representation to the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympic Games given the (People’s Republic of China’s) ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang and other human rights abuses,” said White House press secretary Jen Psaki. U.S. athletes, however, will be participating in the Winter games, said Ms. Psaki. “Team USA will have our full support.”
She explained that “U.S. diplomatic or official representation would treat these [Olympic Paralympic] Games as business as usual in the face of the PRC’s egregious human rights abuses and atrocities in Xinjiang. And we simply can’t do that.”
The Xinjiang region is home to roughly 14 million Uighurs, who are predominantly Muslim, and other ethnic and religious minorities that speak Turkic languages. The most recent State Department Human Rights Report states that genocide and crimes against humanity are ongoing against Uighurs and members of other ethnic and religious minority groups in Xinjiang. These crimes include the arbitrary imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty of more than one million civilians; forced sterilization, coerced abortions, and more restrictive application of China’s birth control policies; rape; torture; forced labor; and the imposition of draconian restrictions on freedom of religion or belief and freedom of movement.
More than one million Uighurs and other members of predominantly Muslim minority groups are in extrajudicial internment camps and an additional two million are subjected to so-called “re-education” training.
President Joe Biden has made clear to Chinese President Xi Jinping that the United States has a fundamental commitment to advance human rights in China and beyond. “Not sending a diplomatic delegation [to the Beijing Olympics and Paralympics] sends that message,” declared Press Secretary Psaki.