China has launched a scathing attack on Australia, Canada, the US and UK after the nations confirmed diplomats would boycott the Beijing Winter Olympics.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed on Wednesday Australia will join the US diplomatic boycott, and send no government representatives to the Winter Olympics in February next year due to China's human rights "atrocities".
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The UK and Canada have since also joined the boycott.
China’s acting ambassador to Australia Wang Xining told Yahoo News Australia the decision was disappointing.
However, on Saturday morning China released a statement and accused the nations of their own 'human rights issues' in a scathing rebuke.
"We urge the US, the UK, Australia and Canada to do some soul-searching and redress their wrongdoings on human rights issues, instead of pointing fingers at others," the statement read.
We urge the US, the UK, Australia and Canada to do some soul-searching and redress their wrongdoings on human rights issues, instead of pointing fingers at others. pic.twitter.com/dLBxBaeYZ5
— Spokesperson发言人办公室 (@MFA_China) December 10, 2021
The statement comes after Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said no one will care if Australian government officials didn't attend the Games.
"China hasn’t invited any Australian government official to attend the Beijing Winter Olympics," he said.
"In fact, no one would care whether they come or not, and Australian politicians’ political stunt for selfish gains has no impact whatsoever on the Olympics to be successfully held by Beijing."
China's state media had already taken a swipe at Australia after following the US' boycott in a cartoon.
Australia follows US lead in Olympics boycott
The move comes after China issued a stern warning to America that it would "pay the price" for the decision not to send any government officials to Winter Games Beijing, in protest against China's human rights record.
Like the USA, Australian athletes will still be able to compete at the Games despite the diplomatic boycott.
The PM said the decision was made due to human rights abuses in China, and that Australia's stance on the issue was "not surprising".
Morrison also said while there would be a diplomatic boycott from Australia, athletes would still be attending the Beijing Olympics, which begin in February.
"People have been very aware that we have been raising a number of issues that have not been received well in China," Morrison told reporters in Sydney on Wednesday.
"But the human rights abuses in Xinjiang and many other issues that Australia has consistently raised ... the Chinese government has consistently not accepted those opportunities for us to meet about these issues."
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