UK lawmakers unanimously vote in favour of diplomatic boycott of Beijing Games

DHARAMSALA, 15 July: The British parliament has voted in favour of a motion calling for the British government to stage a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics to be held in Beijing.

The lawmakers have unanimously voted to pass the motion led by MP Tim Loughton in the house on Thursday urging for a diplomatic boycott of the Games unless the Chinese government ends the “atrocities” that continues to take place in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region.

The motion calls out China for “credible accusations of mass atrocity crimes in the Uyghur Region” and urged the UK Government and its representatives to decline invitations to attend the Beijing Games unless the Chinese government puts an end to the ongoing “the atrocities” and “genocide” in the Xinjiang region against the Uighur Muslims.

It further calls for sanctions imposed on UK politicians and others by Beijing to be lifted.

After the lawmaker across the isle voted in favour of the motion, MP Tim Loughton, the author of the motion has stated that “the government, on the one hand, speaks of industrial-scale human rights abuses taking place in the Uyghur Region, and on the other pursues ever deeper trade links with Beijing” and that it is now time for the government to “toughen up”. 

“It’s time for the government to stop sending mixed messages to Beijing and to toughen up on its response to the Chinese government’s abuses.”

“Authoritarian regimes have a long and troubling history of using the Olympics to whitewash their crimes and spread their propaganda on a global scale. The Chinese Communist Party knows this and so far is getting away with it. It’s up to Britain and democratic states across the world to send a clear message to Beijing: we will not turn a blind eye to the abuses in the Uyghur Region, Tibet and Hong Kong, and we will not let you score a major propaganda victory at the Winter Olympics.” he concluded.

Labour MP Afzal Khan (Manchester Gorton) has seconded the sentiments shared by Loughton and stated that “We cannot, on the one hand, recognise the genocide and on the other send dignitaries and diplomats to the Beijing Olympics.”

The British parliament now joins the EU parliament which also overwhelming voted on a resolution calling for a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics over continuing human rights abuses by the Chinese government. 

Earlier in May, The Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi also called for a global diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics on human rights grounds.

Lawmakers from the US and also calling for similar actions. US  Sen. Mitt Romney has urged lawmakers to follow the EU and adopt a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Olympics in response to the Chinese government’s ongoing human rights abuses.

The Games are scheduled to begin on 4 Feb next year, but calls to boycott it continues to get steam.

Leading Tibetan NGOs along with a coalition of 180 rights groups across the world representing Tibet, Uyghur, Southern Mongolian, Hongkonger, Taiwanese, and Chinese people, along with other international human rights organizations declared that hosting the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, legitimizes China’s human rights abuses as they called on governments around the world to boycott the Olympics after their plea to the IOC to move the games fell before deaf ears in February.

The Tibetan parliament in exile unanimously approved a resolution at its 10th session on the 18th of March calling on the Tibetan cabinet, the parliament as well as all governmental and non-governmental Tibetan entities to launch a worldwide campaign of protests against the Beijing Olympics.

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