Olympic Movement


Chair of Japan's Foreign Affairs Committee calls for international pressure on China over human rights concerns in build-up to Beijing 2022

Chair of Japan's Foreign Affairs Committee calls for international pressure on China over human rights concerns in build-up to Beijing 2022
  • Members of the discussion:

  • Last reply:

A senior member of the Japanese Government has weighed into the controversy over Beijing’s hosting of the 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, with chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee Makoto Nagamine calling on the country to help apply pressure on China over human rights concerns.

As reported by The Sydney Morning Herald, Nagamine told it and Melbourne-based newspaper The Age that he believed Japan should work with other powers such as the United States and United Kingdom on matters relating to human rights in the Xinjiang region.

"Japan has serious concerns about human rights violations in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, the reason why the US and UK are calling for a diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Olympics. Japan should continue working to strongly push China regarding human rights issues, together with the US and other related countries. I believe Japan should continue working closely with the international community to put pressure on China over this issue."

In Xinjiang, China has been accused of using forced Uyghur labour, operating a mass surveillance programme, detaining thousands in internment camps, carrying out forced sterilisations and intentionally destroying Uyghur heritage.

Beijing claims the camps are training centres designed to stamp out Islamist extremism and separatism, and denies the charges laid against it.

A United States State Department report published in January said this amounted to genocide, and a diplomatic boycott is expected from American politicians.

IOC leaders have rebuffed calls for Beijing 2022 to be moved, and declined questions on the Winter Games at the final press conference of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics

Leading representatives from five US-based members of The Olympic Partner (TOP) programme were quizzed over their sponsorship of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) at a Congressional hearing last month, in which Representative Jim McGovern accused the IOC of "cold indifference to genocide".

Some politicians, including former US vice-President Mike Pence and Canadian opposition leader Erin O'Toole, have called for the Games to be moved.

Others from Britain, Australia and the US have spoken in support of a diplomatic boycott.

IOC leaders have consistently rebuffed calls to move Beijing 2022 and say the organisation remains neutral on political issues, while questions on the Winter Olympics were declined at the final Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics press conference earlier this month.

IOC Presidential spokesperson Mark Adams said it would answer questions in relation to Beijing 2022 when it returns to Lausanne in Switzerland.

China's record on human rights in Tibet and Hong Kong has also come under scrutiny, and Nagamine insisted Hong Kong is an "extremely important partner to Japan". 

He added that China has behaved in a way "inconsistent with international law".

Nagamine was first elected as a Member of the House of Councillors for the Miyazaki Prefecture for the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) in 2013, and his comments mark the first notable intervention from a senior member of Japan’s Government on these matters in the build-up to Beijing 2022.

The Winter Olympics in Beijing are due to start on February 4 2022, less than six months away

The country’s defence minister Nobuo Kishi also told The Sydney Morning Herald: "We don’t think that the Olympics should be used for political purposes.

"With respect to our relations with China, whatever concerns that we have, we make a point of frankly conveying to them."

Japan has angered China with the LDP entering security talks with Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party, which Bloomberg reports are to begin today.

This follows talks between representatives from the US, Japan and Taiwan last month.

China insists Taiwan is a part of its territory and has increased diplomatic pressure since President Tsai Ing-wen, a known sceptic of Beijing, was elected in 2016.

It strongly criticised the meeting held in July, while foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin affirmed at a press conference this week that "China firmly opposes all forms of official interactions between Taiwan and countries having diplomatic ties with China".

The Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games are due to commence in less than six months, running from February 4 to 20, with the Paralympics from March 4 to 13.

This would make the Chinese capital the first city to host the Summer and Winter versions of these events.

Original source

Top of discussion

The 2023 World Figure Skating Championships Conclude in a Blaze of Glory for Japan

This Championship was pretty amazing! And it showed that without Russians it didn’t become less interesting. The public doesn’t need quads by 15 year olds to enjoy the competition

Elena Anikina: "We hope, especially considering the position and strategy which IOC has now, that very soon the situation will be changed"

Apparently, soon Russia will have to build luge-bobsleigh tracks not only in Russia, but also in partner countries!) In terms of competitiveness for Russian bobsleigh, this is a st

Alexander Tkachev: "We make sure that our athletes get the most important thing - the opportunity to compete"

Yes, it is an interesting vector of development, it is also important here what projects and initiatives Russia can offer for Asian countries? Will we be able to host the Asian Che

Israeli gymnastics hit by allegations parents were asked to bribe judges

A great case, it seems tha now we need an analogue of WADA, who will investigate attempts to bribe judges, etc. It will be very interesting.

Sport and politics: my experiences as an athlete

Все это лишь еще раз доказывает, что спорт должен оставаться вне политики. К сожалению, чаще всего это просто слова.

Olympian, Nassar survivor Tasha Schwikert Moser on USA Gymnastics' board of directors

Очень круто, когда человек уверен, что именно он может что-то изменить, а особенно когда человек знает спорт изнутри. Уважать!

Disqualified for running in a hijab, Noor Alexandria Abukaram turned pain into action

Хочу поблагодарить эту спортсменку за то, что она не побоялась поставить свою историю в пример. Я считаю, что спортсмен может раскрыть свою религию. Хиджаб – выявленная черта мусул

Suni Lee finds support at Auburn after Olympics 'impostor syndrome'

Случайно, я знаю об этой спортсменке, сделал один вывод, что она точно не блещет, она очень солнечный человек. Жаль, что кто-то не был счастлив, когда она заслужила золото для свое

'Anesthetic injections are....' - WADA chief on doping accusation on French Open winner Rafael Nadal

Да, конечно, спорт — это преодоление себя. А к Рафаэлю вопросов нет, только респект за шикарную игрушку. Но все же, мне кажется, нельзя на сто процентов сказать, что теннисистка то

Give us a chance

Yes, I think athlets from foreign countries understand that all Championships and tournaments are not competitive enough without Russian athlets. I think one day when the situatio

Sport and Politics. Instead of afterword

The question of connection between Sports and Politics was always "exstra burning". So I am interested in your opinion: where should be the border between sport and politics and wh

“Oh, come on, where’s the medals?” or Do the media force athletes too hard?

I am pleased to announce that the British duck has been broken. Team GB will win at least one silver by the end of the Games on Sunday following their win in the Men's Curling semi

We use cookies to improve the site and your interaction with it. If you continue to use this website, you are giving :appName permission to collect and store cookies on your device.