The organization Human Rights Watch (HRW) has sent this Monday a letter to the president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Thomas Bach, in which it has warned him that “the increase in repression of the Chinese government from Xinjiang to Hong Kong “threatens its ability to host the Winter Olympics in February 2022, according to Europa Press.
The Human Rights climate in the country is a cause for concern for the holding of the games in China, as the organization has detailed in a statement, which has indicated the lack of freedom from the media and the Internet, the incarceration of more than a million Muslims in “political education” camps and the lack of transparency. He has also pointed to the situation in Hong Kong and the increase in restrictions on freedom of expression.
In the face of these violations and repression, “the IOC must immediately carry out robust Human Rights due diligence around the preparations for the 2022 Beijing Olympic Games and explain its efforts to manage human rights risks related to human rights. Games before February 2021 “.
HRW has pointed out the “considerable” deterioration that the Asian country has had in terms of Human rights since the Olympic Games in Beijing in 2008, although even then violations such as forced evictions and the silencing of civil society activists were committed. No one was able to obtain a permit to protest in the areas the government agreed to establish for the games, and at least one person who tried, Ji Sizun, was imprisoned for trying to get a permit.
However, the government of President Xi Jinping “has significantly tightened social controls and the supremacy of the Chinese Communist Party,” placing greater restrictions on religion, civil society, the Internet, the media, and universities.
In addition, he has prosecuted numerous activists and journalists on unfounded charges, persecuted Turkish Muslims in Xinjiang and other ethnic minorities, and drastically dismantled freedoms in Hong Kong.
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The organization has also denounced that the Chinese authorities used the 2008 games to justify a major expansion of the national security apparatus and the investment and promotion of surveillance technologies such as facial recognition, which “allowed further repression over the next decade” .
At that time, “the IOC was silent,” said HRW China Director Sophie Richardson, saying that the adoption of new standards requires significant action and difficult decisions, or else it is just an insult to everyone. those who suffer the massive rights violations Beijing “, referring to the publication at the beginning of the year of an IOC decalogue on Human Rights.
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