A skier and a coach criticize China’s choice for the Games

February 4, 2022

British freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy, a silver medalist at the 2014 Olympics, and American skating coach Adam Rippon criticized the fact that they agreed to the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing, due to the human rights issue in China.

“In my opinion, I think a country should not be allowed to host the Games if it has terrible human rights positions,” Kenworthy told the BBC on Thursday.

“I know that the Olympics are very important for China and that they are always at the top of the medal table, so I feel like really taking a stand against them in a concrete way, that can probably trigger positive change. But we would say it’s all a question of money. I really don’t think they are prepared to organize the Games,” the 30-year-old skier, registered in Beijing-2022, told the British media.

From the Chinese capital, Adam Rippon told CNN that he hopes that the Games will provide greater vigilance over the organizing country: “What I hope with these Games is that there will be greater attention to these human rights problems, that this puts pressure on the Chinese government to really get into it.

“Because when we think about it, why should the Games be attributed to a country where this kind of thing happens?” the team bronze medalist at the 2018 Games and current coach added to US television.

Before the official opening of these Games, on Friday, voices were raised about human rights in China, in particular about the fate of the Uyghur Muslim minority.

The United States and some of its allies decided on a diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Games to protest against what they consider to be genocide and crimes against humanity in the Xinjiang region. China firmly denied the accusations.