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China warns Washington not to boycott Winter Olympics

BEIJING (AP) – The Chinese government on Wednesday warned Washington not to boycott next year’s Winter Olympics in Beijing after the Biden administration said it was talking to allies about a joint approach to human rights abuses.

The Foreign Ministry spokesman denied the allegations of abuse against ethnic minorities in Xinjiang. He warned of an unspecified “strong Chinese response” to a possible boycott of the Olympics.

“The politicization of sports will damage the spirit of the Olympic Charter, the interests of athletes from all countries,” said spokesman Hao Lijian. “The international community, including the US Olympic Committee, will not accept this.”

Human rights groups are protesting against the holding of games by China, which should start in February 2022. They called for a boycott or other means to draw attention to allegations of Chinese violence against Uyghurs, Tibetans and Hong Kong residents.

The US State Department suggested that an Olympic boycott was a possibility, but a senior official said the boycott was not discussed later. The International Olympic Committee և The US Olympic և Paralympic Committee has previously stated that it opposes boycotts.

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