SWC Condemns Deal Between NBA Star Kyrie Irving and Chinese Brand Linked to Human Rights Abuses

October 6, 2023

The Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) is calling out controversial NBA player Kyrie Irving who has become Chief Creative Officer of the Chinese apparel brand ANTA in a move that has sparked outrage due to the sporting goods company being directly linked to “crimes against humanity” and a “genocide” by the Chinese government when it comes to forced labor by Uyghur Muslims.

Irving’s previous deal with Nike ended after his anti-Semitism controversy with the Brooklyn Nets when he was suspended for eight games after repeatedly refusing to apologize for promoting an anti-Semitic film on social media.

“Kyrie is right. He has freedom of choice­ – in the past he’s chosen to promote bigotry, now the NBA superstar chooses to display ‘his virtues’ and morals by turning a blind eye to suffering of fellow Muslims – Uyghurs for dollars,” stated Rabbi Abraham Cooper, SWC Associate Dean and Director of Global Social Action.

For further information, please email Michele Alkin, Director of Global Communications at malkin@wiesenthal.com or Shawn Rodgers at srodgers@wiesenthal.com, join the Center on Facebook, or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent directly to your Twitter feed.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is an international Jewish human rights organization. It holds consultative status at the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the Council of Europe, the OAS, and the Latin American Parliament (PARLATINO).

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