Swedish skater calls China’s hosting of Olympics ‘extremely irresponsible’ amid human rights abuses

The fact that China was allowed to host the Winter Olympics has created reactions and provoked debate around the world.

Swedish Gold hero Nils van der Poel, who won two gold medals at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, has previously said that he does not want to comment on the situation before the Olympic Games but now that the skater is back on Swedish soil he shares his opinion.

To media Expressen, he says that he thinks the situation in Beijing is “terrible” but emphasized that he did not want to say too much since there are still Swedish athletes in China. He compared the games to the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin:

“The Olympics are a lot, it is a fantastic sporting event where you unite the world and nations meet. But that is also what Hitler did before he invaded Poland and that is what Russia did before they invaded Ukraine. I think it is extremely irresponsible to give the hosting of the Olympics to a country that violates human rights as clearly as the Chinese regime does.”

Nils van der Poel explains that the athletes have been extremely focused on being athletes and have not talked much about politics. When speaking about being in the Olympic village, he says, “It has been very nice, the Chinese people I have met have been absolutely fantastic. I have had a very nice experience behind the scenes.”

About Gregers Møller

Editor-in-Chief • ScandAsia Publishing Co., Ltd. • Bangkok, Thailand

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