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2022 winter games in beijing

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Speed skater gives away his Beijing Winter Olympics gold medal to protest China’s human rights violations

nils van der poel
  • Olympic speed skating champion Nils van der Poel gave away his gold medal to protest human rights violations in China.
  • Van der Poel handed his gold medal to Angela Gui, daughter of Gui Minhai, who disappeared in 2015 after publishing a book that criticized the Chinese government and is now detained on espionage charges.
  • The 25-year-old Swede had won a gold medal in both the 5,000-meter and 10,000-meter speed skating event at the Beijing Winter Olympics.
  • Van der Poel has voiced concerns over human rights violations in China while criticizing its selection as an Olympics host nation.

Swedish Olympic speed skater Nils van der Poel gave his Beijing Winter Olympics gold medal to the daughter of a man detained for publishing a book criticizing the Chinese government to protest the nation’s human rights violations.

Angela Gui posted on Twitter about Van der Poel visiting her in Cambridge, England, yesterday, after he handed her his gold medal from the 10,000-meter speed skating event to honor Angela’s father. Van der Poel also won gold in the 5,000-meter speed skating event at this year’s Winter Olympics.

Speed skater Miho Takagi finally strikes gold after 3 silver finishes at Beijing Winter Olympics

Miho Takagi
  • Japanese Olympic speed skater Miho Takagi won her first gold medal in the 1,000-meter speed skating competition on Thursday.
  • Takagi finished her performance with a final time of 1:13.19, beating the previous Olympic record of 1:13.56 set by Jorien ter Mors at the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics.
  • The 27-year-old had won three silver medals prior to her gold medal win in the 1,500-meter, 500-meter and team pursuit speed skating competitions.

After winning three silver medals at the Beijing Winter Games, Japanese speed skater Miho Takagi set an Olympic record during the 1,000-meter women’s speed skating final on Thursday en route to her first gold medal.

Takagi set an Olympic record during her performance at the 1,000-meter event on Thursday, finishing with a final time of 1:13.19. The previous Olympic record, set by Jorien ter Mors at the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics, was 1:13.56.

US Olympian alleges his Twitter was suspended after he praised China on ‘stellar job’ hosting Winter Games

aaron blunck
  • Aaron Blunck, a three-time U.S. Olympic skier, alleged that his Twitter account was suspended after he complimented China’s operation of the Beijing Olympics.
  • During a press conference interview with reporters on Sunday, the 25-year-old praised China’s handling of COVID-19 protocols and criticized the media’s coverage of the Games.
  • Blunck’s Twitter was purportedly suspended shortly after, and he took to Instagram to question the platform’s alleged decision.
  • Several of Blunck’s teammates have shared his positive sentiment about the Olympic Village in Beijing.

U.S. Olympic skier Aaron Blunck alleged that his Twitter account was suspended after he praised China for a “stellar job” hosting the Winter Olympics and criticized media coverage of the Games.  

The 25-year-old athlete told reporters in a press conference on Sunday that China had done “a stellar job with the whole Covid protocol,” reported the Washington Examiner. “Being stateside, you kind of heard of some pretty bad media, and that is completely false.”

US-born freeskier Eileen Gu wins second medal at the Beijing Olympics with silver finish in slopestyle

Eileen Gu
  • California-born freestyle skier, Eileen Gu, landed a silver medal on Tuesday’s slopestyle course at the 2022 Beijing Olympics.
  • The 18-year-old barely fell short of the gold medal, scoring only 0.33 points behind Swiss freestyle skier Mathilde Gremaud.
  • Gu finished the slopestyle course with a final score of 86.23.
  • The young Team China athlete is now set up to potentially become the first action-sports athlete to win three medals at a single Winter Olympics game.

Freestyle skier Eileen Gu has won her second medal at the Beijing Winter Games, finishing second in the slopestyle course on Tuesday and falling just short of the gold by only 0.33 points behind Mathilde Gremaud.

Competing in subzero temperatures, Gu was sitting in eighth place after the first two runs but managed to land a big score on her third run, placing second with a final score of 86.23, reported the New York Times. The first-place winner of the slopestyle course, Mathilde Gremaud, finished with a final score of 86.56.

‘50% for China’: Speed skater Liu Shaoang wins Hungary’s first-ever Winter Olympics individual gold medal

  • On Sunday, Chinese Hungarian short-track speed skater Liu Shaoang won Hungary’s first-ever individual gold medal at a Winter Olympics, as well as the country's first individual gold medal at the Beijing Winter Olympics during the 500-meter event.
  • “My mum stitched two flags together – the Hungarian flag and the Chinese flag," Liu told Reuters prior to his gold medal win at Sunday's event. "I want to win not only for the Hungarian people and not only for myself, I want to win for the Chinese people as well. I am 50/50. If I get any medal, 50% is for China and 50% is for Hungary.”
  • Liu also won bronze medals in the mixed team relay and the 1,000-meter event.
  • Liu was also part of the team that won first place during the 5,000-meter relay in short track speed skating in 2018 – Hungary's only other gold medal in the Winter Olympics.
  • Liu is the younger brother of Shaolin Sandor Liu, who was disqualified in the final of the men’s 1,000-meter event last week.
  • Liu’s win comes amid a controversial last few weeks in the sport in which referees have been accused of favoring Chinese athletes.

Short-track speed skater Liu Shaoang led throughout the men’s 500-meter event on Sunday to win Hungary’s first-ever individual gold medal at a Winter Olympics, as well as the country’s first gold medal at the Beijing Winter Olympics.

The Chinese Hungarian athlete defeated Russian athlete Konstantin Ivliev and Canada’s Steven Dubois, who took the silver and bronze medals respectively, reported Reuters.  

Korean netizens claim China appropriated South Korean traditions in Beijing Olympics opening ceremony

korean olympics
  • Many South Korean netizens are expressing their disapproval over China’s alleged appropriation of South Korean traditions during the Olympics opening ceremony.
  • While presenting the Chinese flag, a young woman wore clothing that strongly resembled a Korean “hanbok”.
  • Chinese dancers also performed their version of the "pungmul," a traditional Korean folk dance in a segment captioned to imply that the dance originated in China.

China’s Olympics opening ceremony featured hanboks and traditional Korean dances, prompting accusations from South Korean politicians and netizens that China is claiming South Korean traditions as their own.

During China’s opening introduction, several Chinese citizens and military officials presented the flag while wearing a variety of traditional Chinese garments to highlight the ethnic groups throughout China. Among the presenters was a young woman wearing a pink and white hanbok, sparking outrage among South Koreans.

GOP congressman claims NBC refused to air ‘Genocide Games’ ad calling out Beijing Olympics sponsors

genocide games gop ad
  • Florida Republican lawmaker Mike Waltz claimed NBC refused to air “Genocide Games,” his purportedly $40,000 ad which calls out specific U.S. companies for supporting the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.
  • The ad also criticizes China’s government for alleged human rights violations.
  • “This is the equivalent of holding the Olympics in Germany in the 1940s or Rwanda during their atrocities,” Waltz said of the ongoing Winter Games. “It is beyond the pale that the [International Olympic Committee] didn’t move the games.”
  • Some of the companies mentioned in the ad, which features Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter Freedom, include Procter & Gamble, Visa, Coca-Cola, Airbnb, Intel and Nike.
  • NBC refuted Waltz’s claim, saying that it had requested the lawmaker to censor the names of the companies in his video.

Rep. Mike Waltz (R-Fla.) claimed NBC refused to air an ad that calls out U.S. sponsors of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics and accused China of human rights violations.

In a tweet on Saturday, the Republican representative from Florida said the news station refused to air his ad, which he called “Genocide Games,”  unless he censored the U.S. companies’ names in the video, Mediaite reported.

China wins its first gold at 2022 Winter Olympics after Team USA disqualification in speed skating

china's first gold olympics 2022
  • China won its first gold medal at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics due to Team USA being penalized and disqualified.
  • Judges reviewed the semifinal of the short-track speed skating mixed-gender team relay over the weekend and found that Team USA impeded China twice.
  • The host country narrowly beat Italy by 0.016 seconds in the finals, with a total time of 2:37.348 for China. Hungary took third place after judges disqualified Canada due to a collision.

China won its first gold medal at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics after Team USA was penalized and then disqualified after a review of the short-track speed skating mixed-gender team relay over the weekend.

Team USA came in second after Hungary during the semifinal speed skating race on Saturday, earning the American team a chance to win gold at the finals. Meanwhile, China finished third, but only the teams that place first and second can advance to the finals, according to Yahoo! Sports.

2022 Beijing Winter Olympics opening ceremony features visually stunning performances and symbolism

opening ceremony
  • The 2022 Beijing Olympics are officially underway following visually stunning performances and a symbolic opening ceremony.
  • The segment included a snowflake performance bearing the names of every participating country and with snowflakes in the shape of a Chinese knot to represent unity and peace.
  • Athletes walked across LED-enabled floors during the Parade of Nations, and the symbolic ceremonial flame was held by two athletes, one of whom is Uyghur.

The 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics have kickstarted the Games with a grand opening ceremony that featured fanfare, stunning visuals with LED lights and symbolic performances that embodied themes of youth and peace.

To celebrate the arrival of spring, the opening ceremony began with the performance “Spring Awakening,” which included 400 performers equipped with large LED sticks to mimic the movement of spring willows. The costumes were designed by Chen Peng, a Chinese fashion designer.

India announces diplomatic boycott of 2022 Winter Olympics over Chinese soldier torchbearer

India boycott Olympics
  • Col. Qi Fabao, a PLA soldier involved in the deadly 2020 border encounter with Indian troops, was among the torchbearers at the Winter Olympics opening ceremony.
  • The skirmish in the Galwan Valley area resulted in the deaths of 20 Indian soldiers.
  • Col. Qi’s appearance at the ceremony prompted India to announce a diplomatic boycott of the Games’ opening and closing segments.
  • “It is indeed regrettable that the Chinese side has chosen to politicize an event like the Olympics,” Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi told the local press.

India has announced its own diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Games, joining the United States, Canada, Australia, Britain and other countries who protested the host country’s violations of human rights.

On Thursday, the Indian Foreign Ministry announced the boycott after a regimental commander involved in the deadly 2020 border encounter with Indian soldiers was seen as one of the Olympic torchbearers during the Games’ opening ceremony, reported The Washington Post.

SF-born ski star Eileen Gu’s decision to represent China at the 2022 Olympics called ‘opportunistic’

Eileen gu
  • After representing Team U.S.A. in international competitions, freestyle ski star Eileen Gu announced in 2019 that she will be switching to Team China for the 2022 Beijing Winter Games.
  • Gu rose to immediate stardom by winning World Cup tournaments for the U.S. and then for China in her rookie year.
  • Her decision to compete for China at the 2022 Games has drawn criticism from fellow athletes and fans of the sport.

Despite making her intentions known in 2019, freestyle ski star Eileen Gu’s decision to compete for China at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics still continues to spark heated discussions online.

Fellow athletes in the sport have been asking the 18-year-old why she decided to represent a country accused of human rights abuse, reported the New York Post.