Thomas Bach, the president of the Worldwide Olympic Committee, issued what amounted to a uncommon and stunning rebuke of a Chinese language Olympic official throughout a information convention Friday.
His remarks got here after Yan Jiarong, a spokeswoman for the Beijing Olympics, made feedback at a information convention the day before today that appeared to violate Olympic guidelines about political neutrality.
“We had been in contact with BOCOG instantly after this press convention,” Bach stated, utilizing the acronym for the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Olympic Video games, “and each organizations, BOCOG and the I.O.C., have restated the unequivocal dedication to stay politically impartial as it’s required by the Olympic constitution.”
Yan, requested on Thursday about whether or not athletes from Taiwan would march within the closing ceremony on Sunday, responded: “What I wish to say is that there’s just one China on the earth.” Taiwan is a democratic island nation that’s self-ruled however is taken into account a part of Chinese language territory by the federal government in Beijing.
“Taiwan is an indivisible a part of China,” stated Yan, who was previously a Chinese language delegate to the United Nations.
Taiwan competes under the name Chinese Taipei in the course of the Olympics.
Yan additionally jumped in after an Olympic committee spokesman was requested about whether or not supplies for uniforms had been made utilizing pressured labor in China’s Xinjiang area. “I believe these questions are very primarily based on lies,” she stated. “Some authorities have already disputed such false info with lots of stable proof.”
Yan’s feedback appeared in violation of Rule 50 of the Olympic constitution, which prohibits any type of “demonstration or political, non secular or racial propaganda” on the Video games.
Whereas Bach didn’t instantly condemn Yan’s feedback, even a light criticism amounted to among the strongest phrases he has issued on China. Bach took pains earlier than the Olympics to place them as an occasion that’s, and should stay, politically impartial, although that has lengthy been an I.O.C. ultimate slightly than a actuality.
Bach refused to remark when he was requested on the night of the opening ceremony if he had any message for the Uyghur inhabitants, a predominantly Muslim minority group in Xinjiang. China’s repression of Uyghurs has been called a genocide by the US authorities. “If we’re taking a political standpoint, and we’re getting in the midst of tensions and disputes and confrontations of political powers, then we’re placing the Video games in danger,” he stated.