Germany’s chancellor says he will not be at Beijing Olympics
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz indicated on Wednesday that he will not be at the 2022 Beijing Olympics.
Scholz told German broadcaster ZDF on Wednesday, just two days before the Games are set to begin, that “I have no travel plans, so it cannot be assumed that I will suddenly turn up,” Reuters reported.
Germany has not indicated that it is participating in a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, which allows a nation’s athletes to still compete, while an official delegation from that country would not be in attendance.
Countries that have said that they will be participating in a diplomatic boycott include the United States, Taiwan, Lithuania, the United Kingdom and Australia. The United States stated in December that it would be taking such a move.
“The Biden administration will not send any diplomatic or official representation to the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympic games given [China’s] ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang and other human rights abuses,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said during a briefing in December.
However, several other German officials have signaled they will also not be in attendance in Beijing, including its sports and foreign ministers, Reuters reported.
Other countries have expressed concerns over engaging in a diplomatic boycott, including French President Emmanuel Macron, who warned against politicizing the Games.
“I don’t think we should politicize these topics, especially if it’s to take steps that are insignificant and symbolic,” the French president said, according to the BBC.
“To be clear: You either have a complete boycott, and don’t send athletes, or you try to change things with useful actions,” he noted.