FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 4 January 2022
***Photos and videos of today’s protests are available at https://bit.ly/GDAMedia.
Jacob Kessler | +1 516-776-6472 | Jacob@studentsforafreetibet.org (English Media)
Lobsang Tseten | +1 347-807-8509 | LobsangTseten@studentsforafreetibet.org (Tibetan Media)
Jeffrey Ngo | +1 202-845-6275 | firstname.lastname@example.org (Cantonese/Mandarin Media)
One month ahead of Beijing 2022 Opening Ceremony, US activists condemn NBC
NEW YORK, January 4th—Around the globe, protests have been taking place today to mark the one month countdown against the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics. In the United States, activists are using this Global Day of Action to target NBC, the official U.S. broadcaster of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics. Students for a Free Tibet, along with other human rights groups, have tried multiple times to engage with NBC, but received no response from the corporation regarding its human rights responsibilities. Therefore, activists are once again calling upon NBC to live up to their own high standards for advancing “positive change” and fostering “positive impact” in the world.
In New York, Washington, DC, Boston, and LA, activists from the Tibetan, Uyghur, and Hong Kong communities along with other human rights activists demonstrated their opposition through protests at the NBC headquarters in various cities. Activists in Boston and DC attempted to deliver a letter which calls on NBC to drop their sponsorship of the Games. Despite being outside the headquarters for more than an hour, activists in DC were unable to deliver the letter. In Boston, NBC refused to send down personnel, forcing activists to hand the letter to a security guard outside. Full text of the letter from Washington DC, signed by more than 200 groups, can be accessed here.
Dhondup Wangchen is a Tibetan filmmaker who was imprisoned by the Chinese government in 2008 for making a film regarding Tibetans’ perspectives on the Beijing 2022 Summer Olympics. He said:
“I am an ordinary Tibetan whose life has been traumatically impacted by the reckless decision to allow China to host the 2008 Summer Olympics. Now, over a decade later, the situation inside Tibet and across all areas ruled by the Chinese Communist Party is far worse and will be exacerbated by China’s hosting of the 2022 Winter Olympics. The CCP relies on broadcasters like NBC to share their propaganda with the world and to ignore what is happening beyond stadium walls. I call on NBC to immediately drop their sponsorship of the Genocide Games!”
Pema Doma, Campaigns Director at SFT and one of the organizers of today’s Global Day of Action, said:
“Today, we demonstrated to NBC that its partnership with Beijing is inhumane and completely contrary to the values of human rights and freedom of press which they claim to espouse. By broadcasting the Beijing Olympics, NBC is making the grave mistake of aligning its own profits with global acceptance of Beijing’s genocide. To NBC, CCP blood money is more important than doing their journalistic duty to accurately cover China, the Olympics, and all the complications that arise with Beijing 2022. We ask all those who work at NBC: how do you want to be remembered? Is a paycheck really worth selling your soul to the Chinese government? We call on the US government to hold NBC accountable for its complicity in the Chinese government’s human rights violation by acting as its propaganda tool”
Jeffrey Ngo, Hong Kong activists with DC4HK attended the protest in Washington, DC:
“The Chinese Communist Party hasn’t become a more responsible actor on the international stage since the last Olympic Games it hosted. By every measure, the crackdown on dissent both on the mainland and in frontier regions, including Hong Kong, has significantly escalated since 2008. Not a day goes by without me thinking of my friends and colleagues behind bars, many of whom face up to life imprisonment under the National Security Law. The Biden administration is doing the right thing to diplomatically boycott the event, but American corporations ought to stand up for American values, too.”