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Former Utah Jazz center Enes Kanter wants a Beijing Olympics boycott

SHARE Former Utah Jazz center Enes Kanter wants a Beijing Olympics boycott

Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter (13) looks on during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Washington Wizards, Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021, in Washington.

Nick Wass, Associated Press

Former Utah Jazz center Enes Kanter, who now plays for the Boston Celtics and has long been a strong voice against dictatorial regimes around the world, has called for a boycott of next February’s Winter Olympics in Beijing.

Kanter has been far from the only notable person to do so, as many have protested against Chinese president Xi Jinping over alleged human rights violations, particularly against ethnic Uyghurs, but he is certainly a leading voice in the NBA.

Last Saturday morning, Kanter wrote on Twitter, “The genocidal Chinese government and the insecure tyrant behind it all XI JINPING must not be allowed to host the upcoming Winter Olympics. Say NO to @Beijing2022!!”

Kanter also posted a photo of a pair of custom shoes he wore Saturday night as the Celtics played the Washington Wizards that called for a boycott.

He has worn a number of different pairs of custom shoes in the early part of the NBA season with similar messages.

That came about 10 days after China stopped broadcasting Boston Celtics games because of similar comments Kanter had made.

Kanter, who is Turkish, has long been critical of Turkey president Tayyip Erdogan’s repressive policies, which has led to his family disowning him and a warrant being issued for his arrest by the Turkish government.