Swedish speed skater Nils van der Poel on Feb. 13, criticized the International Olympic Committee (IOC), saying that it was “extremely irresponsible” to let China host the Olympics. 

After returning to his homeland from China, the gold medal winner made his remarks. He had previously declined to comment on the Chinese regime and the Games.

He broke his silence to Swedish media Sportbladet, “The Olympics is a lot, it’s a fantastic sporting event where you unite the world and nations meet. But so did Hitler before invading Poland, and so did Russia before invading Ukraine. I think it is extremely irresponsible to give it to a country that violates human rights as blatantly as the Chinese regime is doing.” 

The 25-year-old athlete secured a double gold medal in the men’s 5,000m and 10,000m speed skating at the Beijing Winter Olympics. He also holds the world record and Olympic record for both competitions.

Finally, he set his views about China and its human rights abuses clear. However, he told the paper he would not say much as the Swedish team had not left the country.

Before the Winter Olympics, when approached by Swedish media about the issue, he said it was “not very smart” for him to say anything before the international sports event. However, he said he would comment when he returned from the Games.

Van der Poel said, “Then I can talk. I would be happy to do this, but not in advance. Now I don’t think it’s particularly smart if I want to go there. I have an idea of ​​what is going on, and it is morally wrong.”

Sign up to receive our latest news!

By submitting this form, I agree to the terms.