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International Olympic Committee to meet


International Olympic Committee to meet

International Olympic Commitee to meet in Switzerland today
Photo: AP

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) will convene today to discuss the 2022 Olympic Winter Games in Beijing.

The meeting’s official topics are the upcoming sports calendar, the role of esports, and anti-doping measures. The IOC will likely also discuss the ongoing boycotts of the Beijing Games.

Australia, Canada, and the US are among the countries to announce diplomatic boycotts of the Games due to China’s human rights violations — namely, the genocide of the Uighur population, oppression of Tibetans, and a crackdown on pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong. While athletes from boycotting countries will still participate, officials will not attend. China has threatened unspecified action against the US in response.

The IOC, which has historically positioned itself as a politically neutral body, has received criticism from human rights groups for allowing China to use the Olympics as a soft power tool without acknowledging its human rights violations. Despite the criticism, expect the IOC to continue pursuing “quiet diplomacy” and emphasize that it is not equipped to solve global issues. The boycott will likely not impact the Games, as athletes are still competing. However, US-China relations could suffer, potentially through stalled progress in arms-control talks or sanctions on US politicians.

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