|Enes Kanter Freedom: ‘There are many issues in America. I’m definitely not denying it.’ (File photo by=Charles Krupa/AP)|
[Asia News = Reporter Reakkana] NBA player Enes Kanter Freedom has urged athletes to boycott the Winter Olympics in China. BBC Sports Three weeks before the opening ceremony in Beijing, the Boston Celtics player said athletes should choose "morals over money".
In an interview with Dan Roan on the BBC's The Sports Desk podcast, Kanter Freedom criticized China's human rights record. "While we are talking right now there is a genocide happening," he said. "It is important that athletes use their platform to be the voice for all the innocent people all over the world who don't have a voice. "There are so many athletes, actors, singers, and rappers, or people who have platforms, scared to say a word because obviously there's so much business involved, so much money involved, and sometimes obviously China is paying the bills so they are scared to say a word."
Last year the UK government declared for the first time that genocide is taking place against Uyghurs and others in northwest China. The Chinese government denies all accusations of human rights abuses in Xinjiang. Switzerland-born, Turkey-raised Kanter Freedom - who changed his name to Freedom after gaining US citizenship - has repeatedly spoken out on China's Tibet policy, the incarceration of its Uyghur Muslim minority, and other issues. He told the Sports Desk that he is speaking directly with Olympians.