Czech Senate passes resolution calling for diplomatic boycott of 2022 Winter Olympics in China

The Czech Senate passes a resolution calling on the government to boycott the Winter Olympics to be held in Beijing, China in 2022 on grounds of egregious human rights violations by China against Tibetans, Uighurs and others. The resolution was passed on 10 June 2021.

The resolution was approved by the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defense and Security and presented to the Senate by Chairperson Senator Pavel Fischer.

The resolution raises concerns about the “massive violations of human rights and freedoms, genocide and crimes against humanity, ethnic discrimination, and the suppression of cultural, religious and political identity” in Tibet and Xinjiang. It also noted China’s failed commitments of the 2008 Olympics.

The resolution calls on the government of the Czech Republic for diplomatic boycott and states “the government and other political representatives of the Czech Republic to reject the invitation to participate in the Olympic Games in the PRC, as their presence could be misused to legitimize further discrimination, violence, and suppression of fundamental rights.” It also calls upon the government to evaluate China’s human rights obligations by the PRC and to systematically raise the issues at the UN bodies.

The Czech Olympic Committee has also been tasked with ensuring that China is ready to “comply with the principles of the Olympic Charter and its other international obligations and to prevent the abuse of the Olympic Games for political propaganda.”

Senator Pavel Fischer, Chairperson of the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defense, and Security, and chief sponsor of the Resolution, noted “China continues to violate international human rights conventions, and reports of constant repression of the Uighurs or a hermetically sealed Tibet are just the tip of the iceberg. Care must be taken to ensure that China does not politically abuse the Olympics to legitimize further discrimination, violence, and the suppression of fundamental rights.”

During the debate on the resolution Senator Přemysl Rabas, Chairman of the Czech Senate Group of Friends of Tibet, referred to the changes in the Central Tibetan Administration and the assuming of office by the newly elected President of the Central Tibetan Administration Sikyong Penpa Tsering. Speaking about the resolution, Senator Rabas noted, “I believe that a similar stand as the Czech Senate will be taken by other democratic institutions all over the world. As I recently assured the new Tibetan [President], Penpa Tsering, Tibetans will always have allies in the Czech Republic, and this Resolution is a demonstration of that commitment.”

Former Member of Parliament and Secretary of the Senate Group of Friends of Tibet, Katerina Bursik Jacques noted that “Today’s firm support for the people of Tibet and Xinjiang was long overdue.”

The Tibet Bureau Geneva is grateful to the Czech Republic and its people for their strong support for Tibet and for standing with Tibetans in the just struggle.

Click here to view the adoption of the resolution and debates.