With the United States announcing a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Games on Monday, the fallout from that decision is sure to have a ripple effect across the globe.
Naturally the reaction from China was very critical of U.S. President Joe Biden’s announcement. China has threatened to retaliate in recent weeks if a boycott happened, and on Tuesday they didn’t back down at all from that stance.
“Out of ideological bias and based on lies and rumors, the U.S. is trying to disrupt the Beijing Winter Olympics,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian. “This will only expose its sinister intention and further erode its moral authority and credibility.”
“It has shot itself in the foot. The U.S. should understand the grave consequences of its move.”
China did not offer any specifics on how it would retaliate but one prominent columnist for state media, Chen Weihua of China Daily, hope Biden lives long enough to see China boycott the Los Angeles 2028 Summer Games.
Meanwhile in Europe, the European Commission which is the European Union’s executive branch, released a statement saying, “The Olympics can be instrumental for spreading positive values promoting freedom and human rights at a global level. We are ready to contribute to that end. However, such platforms should not be used for political purposes.”
Paris will host the 2024 Summer Olympics and French president Emmanuel Macron’s office took note of the move by Biden and said they would coordinate at the European level on the issue.
“When we have concerns about human rights we let the Chinese know,” said his office. “We took sanctions related to Xinjiang last March.”
There is increasingly support for the United Kingdom to follow with their own boycott. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has sent mixed signals of late, telling Parliament earlier Britain is not normally in favor of supporting boycotts, but an active discussion about a diplomatic boycott is being held.
Britain’s deputy prime minister Dominic Raab told LBC News, “I can tell you categorically I will not be attending the Winter Olympic Games.”
Italy is the next host county of the Winter Games and an Italian government official said Tuesday they will not join the American boycott. It is Olympic tradition for an official from the host country to pass the torch to an official from the next host country at the closing ceremonies.