Expert: U.S. diplomats to boycott 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics

Published: 8 December 2021

The United States has announced a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics in China – a move that has been heavily criticized by Beijing. The White House said no official delegation would be sent to the Games because of concerns about China's human rights record but said U.S. athletes could attend and would have the government's full support. (BBC News)

Here is an expert from McGill University that can provide comment on this issue:

René Provost, Full Professor, Faculty of Law

A diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Olympics is a measured and meaningful response to evidence that Chinese authorities are engaged in acts of genocide and other serious violations of human rights. Other governments should, in concert, follow in the footsteps of the United States. Such a gesture is not grounded in a deluded belief that it can force China to change its behaviour, but rather for the purpose of making human rights issues a necessary part of any conversation on any topic with China. Engagement with governments that violate human rights, if it addresses the issue squarely, is more likely to lead to a change of behaviour than a complete disengagement.”

René Provost is a Full Professor in the Faculty of Law and a full member of the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism. He teaches and conducts research in public international law, international human rights law, international humanitarian law, legal theory and legal anthropology.

rene.provost [at] (English, French, Spanish)

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