UN Secretary-General ignores boycott call, travels to Beijing Games opening

Segundo revista, António Guterres teria argumentado à embaixadora dos EUA que já havia ofendido a China ao participar da Cúpula para a Democracia de Biden

According to the magazine, António Guterres allegedly argued to the US ambassador that he had already offended China by participating in the Biden Summit for Democracy| Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres, traveled to Beijing on Wednesday (2) to participate in the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics, despite calls for a diplomatic boycott from several nations, including the United States, which decided not to send their political representatives in protest against violations of human rights in China.

“The Secretary-General sees the Olympic Games as an important expression of unity, mutual respect and cooperation between different cultures, religions and ethnicities,” Guterres spokesman Farhan Haq told a news conference.

02183123Haq stressed that the Secretary-General “has always expressed, both in public and in private, the need for all human rights to be fully respected”, remembering that the presence of the highest representative of the UN at the Olympic Games is a tradition.

About your absence from the Tokyo Olympics, held last year during the pandemic, the spokesperson highlighted that Guterres “has been to every Olympic Games where possible.”

However, he declined to confirm whether the UN Secretary General would raise the issue of human rights abuses with any Chinese government officials during his visit. to Beijing.

The US announced in December 2021 a diplomatic boycott of this year’s Winter Olympics due to human rights violations in the country, especially in the Xinjiang region against the Uighur ethnic group and other Muslim minorities .

“The presence of the US diplomatic representation at the Games would be as if nothing had happened despite China’s blatant human rights violations and atrocities in Xinjiang,” White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said at a press conference on that occasion.

According to information from the American magazine Foreign Policy, Guterres rejected a direct request for a boycott made by the US ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield.
02183123The UN secretary-general allegedly argued to the US representative that he had already offended China by participating in the Summit for Democracy, led by the president American, Joe Biden, and attended by the Taiwanese minister Audrey Tang.

02183123 In addition to the US, the UK, Australia and Canada have also announced their diplomatic boycott. Last week, 243 human rights organizations, led by Human Rights Watch (HRW), signed a joint letter calling for a diplomatic boycott of the Winter Olympics, arguing the repeated violations of fundamental rights against the population, highlighting what happened in Xinjiang, Tibet and Hong Kong.