01.21.22

Lankford, Rubio Call on Olympic Committee to Relocate 2022 Winter Games

WASHINGTON, DC – Senators James Lankford (R-OK) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced a resolution calling on the International Olympic Committee to relocate the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games in response to China’s refusal to acknowledge and stop their egregious human rights abuses. These abuses include genocide, forced labor, and crimes against humanity as a direct attempt to forcibly “assimilate,” or eventually eliminate, vulnerable ethnic and religious groups such as the Uyghurs in the Xinjiang region of northwest China.

“When our athletes are being instructed to leave their cellphones in the United States before heading to China, and we still do not know the wellbeing of tennis star Peng Shaui, we have a responsibility to question why the Olympic Committee is allowing China to host the 2022 winter Olympic games,” said Lankford. “What’s more embarrassing is that we’re allowing the Chinese Communist Party to profit off of the games when it is responsible for genocide and crimes against humanity. Our athletes have trained, worked, and dedicated their lives to representing our nation. American Olympic athletes should not be punished or put in harm’s way while competing in this historic event. I’m calling on the Olympic Committee to relocate the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games to another host country.”

Lankford and Rubio wrote in the resolution, “[we] are urging the International Olympic Committee to relocate the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games in response to the refusal of the People’s Republic of China to end its egregious human rights abuses, including genocide, forced labor, and crimes against humanity.”

Lankford and Rubio also introduced the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Action, which was recently signed into law and ensures that goods made with Uyghur forced labor in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region do not enter the United States. 

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