White House announces political boycott of Beijing 2022 Olympics

WASHINGTON, D.C. (NBC) – The U.S. will stage a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics over concerns about China’s record on human rights, the White House said Monday.

A diplomatic boycott means that no U.S. government officials will attend the games, but American athletes will still be allowed to compete.

China has come under fire for cracking down on pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, for its policies toward Tibet and Taiwan, and for detaining and abusing Muslim Uyghurs.

Some Republican lawmakers who have grown increasingly hawkish toward China have been pressuring the administration to boycott the 2022 games or push for China’s host status to be revoked and for the games to be moved.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said, “The Biden administration will not send any diplomatic or official representation to the Beijing 2022 winter Olympics and Paralympic games given the PRC’s ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang and other human rights abuses. The athletes on Team USA have our full support, we will be behind them 100 percent as we cheer them on from home but we will not be contributing to the fanfare of the games.”

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