Republican members of Congress asked NBC on Tuesday about how much influence the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) will have on its coverage of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, questioning how the NBC network will handle “China’s history of human rights violations,” according to the Hill.
In a letter to CEO Jeff Shell and the President of Olympics Gary Zenkel of NBCUniversal, GOP Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Bob Latta question how NBC’s “investment in the Games to shed light on China’s history of human rights abuses.”
The letter reads:
“Like our athletes competing abroad, we believe all companies doing business in the U.S. must be examples to the world, as their success has been benefited from our country’s respect for the rule of law, human rights, and entrepreneurial enterprise.”
The two congressmen criticize human rights abuses of the CCP saying, “the CCP is responsible for atrocities against Uyghur Muslims in the Xinjiang province. In addition to these despicable actions, the CCP continues to crack down on the citizens of Hong Kong and silence those who speak out against the party. Meanwhile, the authoritarian regime in Beijing continues to use its military presence to threaten Taiwan.”
The U.S. announced a diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics in December, stating that it decided not to send any officials to the Games due to the human rights violations of the Beijing regime.
The lawmakers required the network to provide information relating to its investments in China to find whether its “programming has been influenced by the IOC or the Chinese Communist Party.”
Molly Solomon, president of NBC Olympics production referred to its last week public statement when reached by The Hill over the news.
“We are going to be focusing on telling the stories of Team USA and covering the competition. But the world, as we all know, is a really complicated place right now, and we understand that there are some difficult issues regarding the host nation,” Solomon said.
“So, our coverage will provide perspective on China’s place in the world and the geopolitical context in which these Games are being held. But the athletes do remain the centerpiece of our coverage.” NBC announced last week that it would not send announcers to the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics due to COVID-19 concerns.