Boxer Anthony Joshua was urged to talk about human rights records in Saudi Arabia


Britain’s Anthony Joshua was urged by Amnesty International to talk about the Kingdom’s human rights record using the “platform” of his next world heavyweight title rematch with Saudi Arabia champion Oleksandr Usyk. rice field.

In September, Joshua lost the WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight belts to a 35-year-old Ukrainian in a 12-round battle at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London.

However, the fighting contract includes a rematch clause, confirming that Joshua-Usik II (a match called Red Sea Wrath) will take place on August 20 at the Jeddah Superdome with a capacity of 35,000. I did.

Epoch Times Photo
Anthony Joshua is waiting in the ring on September 25, 2021 at the Tottenham Hotspur stadium in London ahead of the battle with Oleksandr Usyk for the World Heavyweight Championship. (Chris Summers / Epoch Times)

Saudi Arabia has been accused by Amnesty International of trying to “sports wash” its human rights record by hosting a major boxing fight, acquiring British Premier League club Newcastle United and sponsoring the LIV Golf Series. ..

Peter Frankenthal, Director of Economics at Amnesty International UK, said in a Guardian newspaper on Monday: The right to break the malicious spells of Saudi sportswashing. “

“We urge Anthony Joshua to use his platform to show solidarity with those persecuted under the rigorous crackdown on Mohammed bin Salman,” he added. rice field.

In 2020 the British government will be so-called Magnitsky sanctions Twenty Saudis accused of being involved in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul. The Saudi government has denied ordering Khashoggi’s death.

Ukraine, the country of Usyk, was invaded by Russia earlier this year, and the conflict saw widespread allegations of human rights abuses, primarily on the Russian side.

The rematch between Joshua and Usyk was originally scheduled for June, but Usyk returned to Ukraine in February after the Russian invasion, with Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko and his brother Vladimir (former heavyweight champion).

However, Usyk was later given permission from the Ukrainian government to leave the country and return to his training camp, and he is currently preparing for the August match.

Usyk, who has comprehensively outboxed Joshua in the first battle and remains undefeated, said this week, “I have a goal and I will complete my mission with the help of the Lord.”

Joshua, who won the same three titles in Saudi Arabia in 2019 after losing to Andy Ruiz of the United States, said he was “the most motivated ever” and is the third time to match Muhammad Ali’s record. I’m sure I’ll be the World Heavyweight Champion.

The winner of Joshua–Usyk II is strongly advised to fight WBC champion Tyson Fury, who defended his title against Dillian Whyte in the UK last month.

Last year, Joshua in principle agreed to meet Fury in a fight to determine who is the undisputed heavyweight champion in the world, but Fury was subsequently legally acted upon by Deontay Wilder. Threatened and forced to fight Americans for a third WBC title.

Joshua chose to defend his WBO title against the must-have challenger Usyk, but his shocking defeat further added to the Joshua-Fury contest that boxing fans have been waiting for since 2018. I delayed it.

Fury told Sun that he was denied entry to the United States on Friday because of his relationship with Irish promoter Daniel Kinahan, who was licensed by the US Treasury.

Chris Summers

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Chris Summers is a UK-based journalist with a particular interest in crime, police and law, covering stories from a wide range of countries.

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