Kazakhstan’s newly crowned Olympic gold medalists in weightlifting, Maiya Maneza and Zulfiya Chinshanlo, are originally from China. The Chinese communist regime’s mouthpiece Xinhua has been reporting this, with various other state media following suit. They are also apparently participants in an elaborate “Wolf Plan” that sends Chinese athletes abroad.
In 2007, a visit by Kazakh envoys to see China’s Hunan Province-based weightlifting team changed the girls’ lives. At that time, Kazakh officials were interested in 14-year-old Zhao Changling (now Zulfiya Chinshanlo), and another weightlifter Deng Jianying, according to state media outlet Chinese Business Morning News.
Deng was already a record-breaker who lifted 100 kg in the snatch in 2005 at the East Asian Games. The Chinese hesitated sending Deng over. Instead, 21-year-old Yao Li (now Maiya Maneza) went to Kazakhstan with Zhao. The girls were given Kazakh citizenship immediately.
The Wolf Plan, according to Chinese state media, goes by the slogan, “Send and invite.” By sending Chinese abroad, and inviting foreign athletes to China, the plan is designed to help reduce Chinese dominance in certain sports, thereby fostering competition and promoting sports. The plan was originally meant for Ping-Pong, but was later adopted for other sports, including weightlifting.
Two men were identified in official reports as the driving force behind the plan: Cai Zhenhua, a former Ping-Pong player and coach and vice director for China’s State General Administration of Sports, and Ma Wenguang, a former record-breaking weightlifter who is now the general secretary of the International Weightlifting Association.
Athletes dispatched under the Wolf Plan are under five-year contracts, and have the option of returning to China after that time. The People’s Daily says that China could be simply “lending” gold medals to other nations.
Maneza and Chinshanlo were products of a Chinese regime initiative known as the Wolf Plan, says the state-run Liberation Daily. The plan involves placing Chinese athletes from disciplines that China dominates into the sports programs of other countries. In weightlifting China is a decided world leader. At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, out of 15 men’s and women’s weightlifting categories, the Chinese won eight gold medals.
Chinese reporters who spoke with Maneza noted that she answered questions in both Russian and Chinese with a heavy northeastern accent. But when asked if she was from China, Maneza only said that she was born in Kyrgyzstan and later moved to Kazakhstan.
Although Maneza and her Olympic profile claimed that she was born in Kyrgyzstan, Baidu Baike, the Chinese version of Wikipedia, and other Chinese reports describe her as being born and growing up in the northeastern Chinese city of Fuxin, and then joining the Hunan weightlifting team in 2006.
Chinshanlo on the other hand, spoke little Russian and almost no Kazakh. Both weightlifters had interpreters with them in London.
China’s candidates for the categories that Maneza and Chinshanlo won also came as a surprise. Li Ping, the record holder for the women’s 53-kilogram category, was not on China’s roster for the London Olympics. Instead 17-year-old Zhou Jun competed on behalf of China in that class, though she had not won any international competitions—and failed in all three of her snatch attempts. For the women’s 63-kilogram class, in which China also claims a world record with Liu Haixia in 2007, China did not field a contestant.
Zulfiya Chinshanlo is apparently on a five-year contract, which will allow her to return to China this year if she chooses, said an insider at Chinese Business Morning News. Since China does not accept dual citizenship, even if Chinshanlo claimed her Chinese citizenship immediately after returning to China, she would still have to wait five years before she could represent China in international competitions.
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