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2022 Olympics-China warned athletes not to protest in Beijing. What if I protest?

Olympic officials and the Chinese government have warned Winter Olympic athletes to protest at venues and medal stands for possible violations of Olympic rules and Chinese law. Neglected.

The International Olympic Committee has long banned “demonstrations or political, religious and racial publicity” at the Olympic venues, but before last year’s Tokyo Summer Olympics, “without confusion, athletes. The rules have been adjusted to protest.

However, in the days leading up to the Winter Olympics in Beijing, China added ominous new wrinkles. 2022 Beijing International Relations Department Deputy Director Yang Shu said that any protester who violates the “Olympic spirit” or Chinese law could be subject to unspecified punishment by the host country.

Warnings that human rights groups have advised Olympic athletes to take seriously arise in an era of increasing demand for social justice by activist athletes around the world. China has been particularly scrutinized for human rights practices. Over 1 million Uyghur and other Muslim minorities in Western Xinjiang Province as part of what the US government and others have called the slaughter.

Some U.S. officials are concerned that U.S. athletes may face severe sanctions if protests confuse China’s sensibility. From a parliamentary commission overseeing human rights abuses in China. “As the Commission documented, Chinese authorities have imposed a ban on U.S. citizens and even imprisoned aliens for political or suspicious reasons.”

China’s tennis star and three-time Olympic athlete Peng Shuai talk about the limits of free speech in China when he joins social media to blame China’s former Deputy Prime Minister Zhang Gaoli for sexual assault. Concerns attracted international attention at the end of last year. , Peng Shuai’s post was removed from the internet and she disappeared from her public place, raising concerns about her safety. She resurfaced in the video a few weeks later, she withdrew her claim and said she was safe-some critics worried about the Chinese government.

Despite the warning, protests related to this year’s Olympics have already begun, but it is not yet known if athletes will join from Beijing. In December, the United States announced a diplomatic boycott of the event. That is, no high-ranking government officials are present.

In October, when authorities presided over the lighting of the Olympic torch brought from Olympia in Greece to the National Stadium in Beijing, protesters with the Tibetan flag and the flag saying “There is no slaughter game” I participated in the event.

In the weeks and months leading up to the tournament, three-time gold medalist Shaun White, a US snowboarder, said Raised on social media With a flag from Tibet, a region of China where activists have long endured government crackdowns, and US figure skater Timothy Ruduk and Evan Bates set a Chinese human rights record in a comment to reporters. I have pointed out.

Researchers studying athletes’ activities say it’s unclear what will happen if athletes oppose China or make protests that offend Beijing authorities.

Yannick Kluch, Director of Outreach and Inclusive Excellence at Virginia Commonwealth, said: University Sports Leadership Center. “But with candid athletes, they won’t be discouraged,” he said.

He added that the actions China took to punish foreign athletes in opposition would rapidly escalate beyond sports and become a diplomatic case. The protests are very realistic, but if the Chinese impose any punishment, I think the global protests will be very fierce.

The protests in Beijing will be in line with the long tradition of the Olympics. Irish track and field star Peter O’Connor staged the first political protest in Olympic history at the 1906 Athens Olympic Games. Ireland, but the newly enacted Olympic rules, forced him to compete for Britain. To protest, he climbed the flagpole of the Olympic Stadium and waved a green flag adorned with the words “Eringo Bra” or “Ireland Forever”. O’Connor won three more gold medals.

Perhaps the most famous Olympic protest came in 1968 when American sprinters John Carlos and Tommie Smith raised their gloved fists from a medal stand in Mexico City in what is called a human rights salute.

Protests by other athletes continue. At the 2004 Athens Olympics, Iranian judo world champion Ehud Vaks refused to fight Israeli athlete Ehud Vaks in protest of the treatment of Israeli Palestinians. In Rio de Janeiro 2016, Ethiopia’s Faisa Lilesa crossed her arms with an X gesture made to help the Oromo people at the finish line to win a silver medal in the marathon. And many athletes in Tokyo protested shortly after the IOC revised the rules governing the protest last year. A Japanese and British women’s soccer team kneeling on the pitch to support BlackLives Matter.

According to Olympic historians, the IOC has never stripped medals from protesting athletes, but has sent some homes and future players for demonstrations that the Commission has determined to have crossed the line. Banned from the competition.

With stakes raised in Beijing, where the government has recorded dissidents imprisoned for political protests and social media criticism, most observers believe that foreign athletes are unlikely to face similar sanctions. But the Chinese have not publicly ruled it out.

“What the Chinese are saying is,’Well, we must respect the laws and regulations of the host country,'” said Olympic historian David Walletinsky. An airport to leave the country if you are detained. “

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