The East Turkistan Government in Exile's Prime Minister, Salih Hudayar, is campaigning for Americans to make this year's Beijing Winter Olympics, which begins on Friday, the least watched in history in protest of China's genocide of Uyghur Muslims in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR).
The East Turkistan Government in Exile represents the people of the region, where most of China's Uyghur ethnic minority resides together with members of other Central Asian ethnic groups distinct from the Han majority that governs Beijing. For decades, they have been subjected to gruesome human rights crimes in the hands of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Reports showed that many have become political prisoners, have been subjected to detention in internment camps, harvesting live organs, and more.
According to Breitbart, the Uyghur community has been one of the most vocal in campaigning for the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to find another host country for the Winter Olympics on the grounds that several countries have found China guilty of Uyghur genocide, including the U.S. Hudayar lamented that their calls to IOC had fallen on deaf ears as they "ignored" their organization's plea to find another host country for the Winter Games. He also raised concerns on how athletes are proceeding to participate in the games without full knowledge of the crimes their presence in China is endorsing.
Because the IOC failed Hudayar and the East Turkistan Government in Exile, he is now appealing to Olympic fans to boycott the competition in protest of the genocidal tyranny of the CCP. If people successfully boycott the Beijing Olympics 2022, China will realize "that people, average people, are concerned and they care about the ongoing genocide of Uyghurs, unlike what Chamath Palihapitiya and others, the elites like him, state, that 'we don't care' or 'nobody cares.'"
Palihapitiya, a billionaire investor, made headlines in January when he said in an episode of his "All-In" podcast with co-host Jason Calacanis, "Every time I say that I care about the Uyghurs, I'm really just lying if I don't really care. And so, I'd rather not lie to you and tell you the truth, it's not a priority for me."
CNBC reported that Palihapitiya told Calacanis, "Let's be honest, nobody, nobody cares about what's happening to the Uyghurs, okay?" before saying that it was good that his co-host cared as "The rest of us don't care. I'm just telling you a very hard truth."
Hudayar argued however that a successful boycott of the Beijing Winter Games will "show that people care and this will ultimately pressure governments to hopefully engage in stronger actions, more meaningful actions - tangible things that will actually benefit the people on the ground in East Turkistan."
Hudayar underscored how China, when hosting the Olympic games in 2008, promised to "make improvements in human rights" but failed to carry out those promises. In December, President Joe Biden's administration announced the first major "diplomatic boycott" of the Winter Games in China this year.