Olympics-Taiwan says no officials will go to Beijing Winter Games

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Taiwan will not send any officials to the Beijing Winter Olympics but its athletes will attend as normal, the government said on Tuesday, adding a call for China not to use politics to “interfere” with the event or “belittle” the island.

Taiwan competes in most sporting events including the Olympics as “Chinese Taipei” at the insistence of Beijing, which sees democratically governed Taiwan as part of “one China” and inviolable Chinese territory.

Relations have plummeted in the past two years or so as Beijing steps up military and diplomatic pressure to assert its territorial claims, including regular air force flights into Taiwan’s air defence zone, with further massed incursions reported by Taiwan this week.

In a statement, Taiwan’s China-policy making Mainland Affairs Council said the island’s athletes would compete in the Games as normal. At least four have already qualified, according to Taiwan’s Olympic committee.

“In addition, considering the limited number of participants and the previous precedent that our side’s officials were often absent, no official representatives will be sent,” it added.

Taiwan’s Olympic committee will lead a delegation to China and handle matters related to the Games, the council said.

via Reuters

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