OBERHOF (AP) — Biathlon national coach Mark Kirchner doesn’t believe in a sports boycott of the Olympics in Beijing, but also looks critically at the Games in China to be held in a month’s time.
“I stand by the fact that athletes are not there to boycott and try to do political things on the playground. We are there to go and experience the festival of sport,” Kirchner told a digital press conference. said in. Home World Cup in Oberhof: “Athletes are the last players who can do anything there.”
Kirchner, 51, who won three gold medals at the Olympics, sees the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as a liability. “The extent to which the IOC is deviating, seeking excuses and hiding facts has become clear over the past few weeks,” Kirchner said. It is not even a question for him personally that some conditions in China are “fundamentally not correct” and are “in no way acceptable”. Kirchner said the IOC just has to “go to China in a country like this, whether you have to go to China, which is allowed to reward the Games.”
Recently, the United States, Australia, Great Britain and Canada announced that they would not send politicians to the Games from February 4 to February 20. China has been criticized for human rights violations in its dealings with Uighurs and Tibetans, threats against Taiwan and its suppression of the democracy movement in Hong Kong.