U.S. famous skater Timothy LeDuc repudiated the human rights violations taking place in China under the communist regime shortly after qualifying to participate in the Beijing 2022 Olympics.
LeDuc told reporters Sunday—when asked about human rights in China—that “there is no simple answer,” but that he recognizes that “horrible” abuses are taking place, according to USA Today.
“What I can say is we absolutely acknowledge the horrifying things that we’ve seen happening to the Uyghurs. I read somewhere the other day that it’s the largest number of people held in internment and labor camps since World War II,” he said.
“I mean, these are horrifying human rights abuses that we’re seeing happening. And it can feel very powerless when you read those things, because you think, ‘What can I do?’” the skater added.
LeDuc further expressed, “Sometimes I feel helpless when I see the situation in China. I can use my voice here, yes. But what I can do here to stand up for human rights is to make sure I’m vigilant and vote for people in my local communities and state and local elections to stand up for human rights here as well.”
The United States is one of several nations that chose to diplomatically boycott the Games because of abuses by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), including its treatment of Uighurs, Tibetans, Christians and practitioners of the Falun Gong (also called Falun Dafa) spiritual discipline.
In a diplomatic boycott the athletes will still participate in the Games, but will keep politicians and diplomats at home.
While many activists pushed for a full boycott, one of the U.S. officials who voiced his disagreement was Republican Senator Ted Cruz, who claimed that doing so would be punishing the athletes’ efforts.
As reported by Breitbart, over the weekend members of groups being persecuted by the Chinese regime met with Olympians who were training in Minnesota to send them a letter expressing their opposition to holding the Beijing Games.
At that meeting some athletes had their pictures taken with the activists, including snowboarding champion Shaun White, who despite the fact that his safety in Beijing may be compromised, posed with a Tibetan flag.
“We never wanted to politicize the Winter Olympics, but for nearly two years now, the IOC has failed us, and failed you,” the letter read in part. “And so one month from today, the IOC will ask you to stand alongside the genocidal Chinese government at the Opening Ceremony of the Olympics, and to join them in legitimizing the propaganda, sportswashing, and silencing of a 21st-century Holocaust,” part of the letter said.
Both in Tibet and in the Xinjiang area, where the largest number of Chinese concentration camps are concentrated, survivors have given testimonies of having suffered or witnessed forced labor and human rights abuses, even denouncing the forced removal of organs with which the regime maintains a lucrative transplant business.