The Chinese administration ran into more controversy on Wednesday after it announced a People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldier as a torchbearer for the Beijing Winter Olympics. The soldier picked was a part of the military command that attacked Indian soldiers in the Galwan Valley in 2020. Following the event, top United States lawmakers have now come forward to slam the decision and called it “deliberately provocative” from China’s side.
US lawmakers on Thursday called out China for the “shameful” act of picking a PLA regimental commander Qi Fabao as a torchbearer for the Beijing Winter Olympics. Raising objections to the decision, US Foreign Relations Committee member James Risch slammed China for its provocative practices which were intentionally hurting India’s ‘sovereignty’.
Further condemning the Xi Jinping-led regime, the US Senator also shed light on the atrocities inflicted on Uyghur Muslims by the Chinese army. He said that the country was trying to glorify the PLA’s ill motives through the event.
It’s shameful that #Beijing chose a torchbearer for the #Olympics2022 who’s part of the military command that attacked #India in 2020 and is implementing #genocide against the #Uyghurs. The U.S. will cont. to support #Uyghur freedoms & the sovereignty of India. — Senate Foreign Relations Committee Ranking Member (@SenateForeign) February 3, 2022
Taking to his official Twitter handle, Republican Senator Jim Risch questioned China’s action and reaffirmed its stance against Uyghurs’ oppression.
“It’s shameful that Beijing chose a torchbearer for the Olympics 2022 who’s part of the military command that attacked India in 2020 and is implementing genocide against the Uyghurs. The US will continue to support Uyghur freedoms and the sovereignty of India,” Risch said.
Furthermore, US Senator Marco Rubio also hit out at Beijing for the politicisation of the Olympics event. Slamming the move in his tweet, Rubio stated that it was yet another “outrageous example of the #CCP’s flagrant politicisation of Beijing 2022. Their decision to choose a soldier who participated in a 2020 ambush against Indian troops as a torchbearer is appalling and deliberately provocative,” he noted.
Delhi terms China’s action of honouring the PLA commander as “regrettable”
China on Wednesday fielded Qi Fabao, the regimental commander of the People’s Liberation Army, who was involved in the attack on Indian soldiers in the Galwan Valley in 2020. According to reports, Fabao was hurt during the face-off and the show at Beijing was an attempt to honour and redeem PLA sacrifices. The same was glorified by the Chinese state-affiliated media house Global Times, who projected Fabao as a ‘hero’ for skirmishes with the Indian Army.
Fabao took the flame from Wang Meng, China’s four-time Olympic short track speed skating champion, at Winter Olympic Park, as per Global Times reports. Meanwhile, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi came forward to describe the Chinese action of honouring the commander as “regrettable”. The development showed that both the US and India collectively dismissed the Chinese government’s action ahead of the Olympics.