Ahead of the opening ceremony for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games, Mia Hasenson-Gross, Executive Director of UK Jewish human rights charity has issued this statement:
“Today sees the opening ceremony for a Winter Olympics that has already been dubbed ‘the Genocide Games’. When millions of Uyghur people face mass internment, forced labour, organ harvesting, and forced sterilisation, the parallels with the 1936 Berlin Olympics are obvious. It is up to us all not to allow the Chinese government to use the games to whitewash its atrocities in the same way Hitler blinded the world to those of the Nazis.
Will the bright spotlight on Beijing throw Uyghur suffering into the dark? Or can we ensure that some residual light reveals the true horrors of China’s repression? It is up to us all.
Sport can be a thrilling exemplar of the best of humanity – excellence, endeavour and friendship. But the sentiment encapsulated in the games’ motto – ‘Together for a shared future’ – will ring very hollow to all those suffering the brutality meted out by the host nation. It is up to us all to use this moment to demand that the Uyghurs and other minorities can begin to share hope for the future”.
For more information or comment, please contact Mia Hasenson-Gross via [email protected] or 07939 130286
Notes for editors:
- Official opening ceremony for Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics begins on Friday 4 February at 8pm local time (12 noon UK/GMT/UTC)
- René Cassin – ‘the Jewish voice for human rights’ – is a UK charity advocating Jewish support for other minorities. For more information visit www.renecassin.org
- Ethnically Turkic and Muslim by faith, the Uyghurs are a Chinese minority population, concentrated in Xinjiang Province, which Uyghurs call East Turkestan. In recent years, there has been growing evidence of systematic and widespread human rights abuses by the Chinese state against Uyghurs – including mass internment, forced labour, organ harvesting, forced sterilisation, and cultural and religious repression. On 9 December 2021 in London, the Uyghur Tribunal concluded that the Chinese government was guilty of genocide.