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66 lawmakers from the European Union urge diplomatic boycott of Beijing Winter Olympics 2022

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(TibetanReview.net, Jan22’22) – As the Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics for Feb-Mar 2022 draws near, a total of 66 lawmakers in Europe belonging to the European Parliament and national parliaments have called for a diplomatic boycott of the events as a way to denounce the Chinese government for its human rights record especially in Tibet.

In an opinion piece published Jan 21 by Euractiv.com, the 66 parliamentarians from 16 EU countries, including 27 from six national parliaments, have underlined the importance for the EU to agree on a unified position on the issue. They have called on EU Member States to refrain from attending the global sporting event in any capacity.

The signatories have recalled that the International Olympic Committee and China had promised progress in human rights and social conditions when the country was awarded the Summer Olympics for the first time back in 2008, but that the situation only deteriorated.

They have noted that in Tibet, in particular, the situation had continued on a downward spiral, with the Tibetan people’s religious and cultural rights, freedom of expression, and freedom of assembly and association, as well as their social and economic rights, being extensively curtailed.

In this connection, they have referred to the reenactment last month of the worst of the excesses of China’s Cultural Revolution (1966-76) when the authorities demolished a deeply revered 99-foot-tall Buddha statue along with 45 Buddhist prayer wheels in Draggo (Chinese: Luhuo) County in eastern Tibet and detained a number of local Tibetans for allegedly informing the outside world about it.

They have noted that while Lithuania, Belgium, the Netherlands and Denmark had decided not to send any official government delegation to the Games, the EU countries had so far been unable to agree on a common stance on the issue despite the European Parliament’s call on them to do so in a Jul 2021 call.

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