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Content about International Olympic Committee

February 23, 2014

'In the [bid] process it would be helpful. I would like to see it but I also understand it's not that easy'

On the last day of the Sochi Winter Games, tennis legend Billie Jean King hopes the International Olympic Committee changes its charter to specifically declare anti-gay discrimination is prohibited.

'Hopefully [IOC president] Mr [Thomas] Bach and the IOC will think about the next time they give a bid out - I hope that they'll look at discrimination as a big part of it,' she said to the BBC.

'But no country is perfect. America certainly isn't,' King continued. 

February 19, 2014

Star Trek icon tells GSN: “This Olympics is really a chilling thing because it reminds me of the 1936 Olympics when the Olympics Committee provided an international platform for Adolf Hitler'

George Takei has been watching some of the Olympics in Sochi even though he strongly believes they never should have been allowed to be held in a country with an anti-gay propaganda law in place.

The openly gay Star Trek icon tells Gay Star News that he considers the International Olympic Committee 'spineless' for not moving the games after it was clear that 'Russia breaks the pledge to the Olympic creed of no discrimination.'

February 18, 2014

IOC spokesman says countries who do not abide by an anti-discrimination rule could factor in decisions on the bidding process

Russia, and other countries with homophobic laws, could be banned from hosting the Olympics under a proposed new rule.

The International Olympics Committee has responded to calls that countries must abide by a specific anti-discrimination decree modelled on the Olympic Charter’s Principle 6.

Principle 6 says sport does not discriminate on any grounds, including race, religion, politics or gender.

February 16, 2014

The Principle 6 campaign fights against Russia's anti-gay propaganda laws

The struggle for LGBTI equality in Russia has a new ally.

Pop singer Rihanna posted on her Twitter and Instagram accounts a black and white photo of her wearing a P6 hat.

February 9, 2014

Despite arrests, reported beatings and threats of sexual violence against activists who were detained, the IOC says nothing except that Russia was acting in accordance with its laws

Since the start of the Sochi Olympic Games on Friday, some 61 activists – 24 of them for staging pro-gay demonstrations – have been arrested across Russia. Some of those held in Moscow have reported being beaten while in police custody.

February 7, 2014

Read the amazing speech from the ‘gay Olympic opening ceremony’ condemning Russian hate and the IOC

An alternative Olympic ceremony has seen a Rainbow Flame lit in Berlin to be tended day and night throughout the games, as a symbol of hope for LGBTI rights in Russia.

Here is an exclusive translation of the speech made by Alfonso Pantisano at the lighting ceremony:

Dear friends, welcome to Potsdamer Platz in Berlin.

January 26, 2014

Clothing line uses Olympic charter’s anti-discriminatory Principle 6 to show opposition to Russia’s ‘non-traditional sexual relations’ law, and has athletes on-side

Gay rights campaigners have joined forces with clothing brand American Apparel to produce and promote a range of garments that encourage diversity in sport ahead of the Winter Olympics in Sochi next month.

The campaign uses Principle 6 from the Olympic charter to express opposition to Russia’s controversial anti-gay propaganda law that was introduced last summer.

Principle 6 states: ‘Sport does not discriminate on grounds of race, religion, politics, gender or otherwise.’

January 20, 2014

Mario Pescante has accused Barack Obama of 'political terrorism' after including three gay athletes as part of the delegation to the Sochi Olympics

An Olympics official has offered a half apology for his slam on the US including gay athletes in its delegation to the Sochi Olympics next month.

Mario Pescante, former vice president of the International Olympics Committee, said the US should not be ‘promoting’ gay rights while in Sochi.

‘It’s absurd that a country like that sends four lesbians to Russia just to demonstrate that in their country gay rights have [been established],’ he said.

Facing calls to resign, he has now admitted he used the wrong ‘terms’ to criticize President Barack Obama.

January 16, 2014

Italian member of the IOC says it is 'absurd' the US is sending gay athletes and should not be 'promoting' LGBTI rights

A senior IOC member has slammed the US for including gay athletes in its official delegation to the Olympics next month.

Mario Pescante, former vice president of the International Olympics Committee, is reported to have said the US should not be ‘promoting’ gay rights while in Sochi.

‘It’s absurd that a country like that sends four lesbians to Russia just to demonstrate that in their country gay rights have [been established],’ he said.

‘The games should not be an occasion and a stage to promote rights that sports supports daily.’

December 13, 2013

Aussie Belle Brockhoff is the one of the only known gay athletes to compete in Sochi, and is planning to wear an anti-discrimination clothing line

A gay snowboarder is to risk arrest and deportation at the Sochi Winter Olympics in Russia next February.

Australian athlete Belle Brockhoff is the only known openly gay athlete to be qualified for next year’s Games.

Going for gold in the snowboard cross, this is the 20-year-old’s first Olympics and she is going to make it count.

‘I'm one of those people who just wants to separate politics from sports,’ she said.

December 10, 2013

IOC chief sends letter to all prospective Olympians to avoid causing 'controversy' while competing in Russia

Athletes have now been expressly warned against protesting against the anti-gay laws in Russia while they compete in the Sochi Winter Olympics next year.

International Olympic Committee chief Thomas Bach has told athletes they should avoid being involved in any ‘controversy’.

The IOC will draw up a letter to send to athletes when it meets in Lausanne, Switzerland today (10 December).

‘As an athlete, you do not want to be confronted with any kind of political controversies at the Games,’ he said, according to the BBC.

November 30, 2013

Representatives from a group of of Russian LGBTI rights organizations meet with the International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach

In a Paris meeting with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, representatives from Russian gay rights organizations asked Bach to seek specific answers on how Russian authorities will enforce 'gay propaganda' laws during the 2014 Winter Games.

November 21, 2013

Now LGBTI activists get ready to turn Coca-Cola’s headline sponsorship of the Sochi games into an embarrassing failure

Coca-Cola has indicated it will not be taking a stance against Russia’s anti-gay laws at the Sochi Winter Olympics where it is a headline sponsor.

The soft drinks firm has also backed the International Olympic Committee’s response to Russian human rights abuses.

October 28, 2013

With the start of 2014 Winter Games now 100 days away, Russian president tries to soften anti-gay tone

Russian President Vladimir Putin is saying gays are welcome at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

With his country's widely-criticized anti-gay propaganda law still in place, Putin on Monday (28 October) for the first time appeared to be making some kind of gesture to the LGBTI community as the worldwide sporting event draws closer.

October 1, 2013

Bode Miller, one of the greatest American downhill skiers in history, has spoken out against those who say sports people should not speak out on political issues

A US Olympic ski champion has called Russia’s anti-gay laws ‘absolutely embarrassing’.

Bode Miller, the greatest downhill skier in American history, said he felt he had no choice in speaking out on the ‘gay propaganda’ laws controversy surrounding the Sochi Winter Olympics. The Games will be held in just over 100 days time.

‘I think it is absolutely embarrassing there are countries and people who are that intolerant or that ignorant,’ Miller told reporters yesterday (30 September) at the US Olympic media summit.

September 27, 2013

'The IOC has completely neglected its responsibility to athletes, corporate sponsors, and fans'

The largest LGBT rights group in the US is blasting the International Olympic Committee for not taking a stand against Russia's anti-gay propagenda law.

At a press conference Thursday (26 September), IOC chairman Jean-Claude Killy stated that unless the Olympic Charter is clearly violated, 'the IOC doesn't have the right to discuss the ... laws that are in place in the country hosting the games.'

September 5, 2013

Outgoing president Jacques Rogge has said they are considering Yelena Isinbayeva's role as an ambassador after her anti-gay comments

The Olympics president has admitted he is powerless to stop the anti-gay laws during the Sochi Winter Games.

Jacques Rogge, the International Olympic Committee’s outgoing president, has said the world organization can do little to nothing.

Speaking in Buenos Aires, he said: ‘We have received some oral and written assurances about the fact the Russian Federation will respect the Olympic charter and no negative effect will occur for people attending in or participating in the Games.

September 2, 2013

The International Olympic Committee has ruled out the possibility of moving the Sochi Olympics out of Russia over its treatment of LGBTs in a letter to Australian Greens leader Christine Milne, saying there’s not enough time left for that to happen

The Director General of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has categorically ruled out moving the Sochi Winter Olympics to another country over Russia’s so-called gay propaganda ban in a letter to Australian Greens leader Senator Christine Milne.

In the letter, which has been obtained by GSN, the IOC’s Christophe De Kepper said  it was impossible to move the games at such a late stage.

August 26, 2013

Despite assurances from Russian government that gays will be punished, presidential candidate for the International Olympic Committee Ng Ser Miang has expressed his approval about the upcoming games

An International Olympic Committee (IOC) presidential candidate is confident the Sochi Winter Olympics next year will be ‘wonderful’.

Ng Ser Miang, who could replace current IOC president Jacques Rogge on 10 September, made a statement from his office in Singapore today.

He believes the rights of LGBT athletes and spectators will be protected at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, despite Russia’s anti-gay law banning ‘homosexual propaganda’ and conflicting reports from Russian government as to how the laws will apply during the Olympics.

August 20, 2013

The International Olympic Committee needs to show its commitment to both helping Russia’s LGBT community through the Sochi Winter Olympics and tackling homophobia in sport

As the approach of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games raises attention to the official and unofficial homophobia of host country Russia, the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) responses, or lack thereof, are increasingly disturbing.

Despite the rising calls for action, the IOC has remained impervious to appeals to work together to identify the problem and propose solutions.

August 20, 2013

Russia’s Straight Alliance for LGBT Equality has called for the Sochi Winter Olympics to be moved to another country while their homeland continues to persecute gays

A group of Russian heterosexual allies of LGBT people has written an open letter to the President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and world leaders calling for the Winter Olympics to be moved to another country while Russia continues to persecute homosexuals.

The Straight Alliance for LGBT equality is a Russian social movement founded in May of 2012 in St Petersburg and has nearly 10,000 followers on the VK social media website.

August 12, 2013

Forget the Russian police, athletes who back gay rights during Sochi’s Winter Games may be punished by the Olympic Committee

The International Olympic Committee will likely stop any athlete who shows solidarity for LGBT Russians at the Sochi Games, GSN can reveal.

Gay Star News asked the global Olympic bosses what they were planning to do to ‘make sure the LGBT community in Russia can have a visible, proud, safe presence at the games’.

But the IOC replied the games were not the place for ‘political’ statements. Any participant who steps out of line may be punished, not by the Russians but by Olympic chiefs themselves.

August 9, 2013

'We don't understand all the details because of probably a difficulty in translation'

The International Olympic Committee today asked Russia for 'further clarification' on how its anti-gay propaganda law will be applied during the 2014 Olympics in Sochi.

IOC President Jacques Rogge said at a news conference that they have received 'reassurances' from Deputy Prime minister of the Russian Federation Dmitry Kozak who is in charge of the organization of the Games in Sochi.

August 7, 2013

Urges Russia to repeal anti-gay laws in advance of 2014 Sochi Olympics

The outcry against Russia's anti-gay propaganda law got louder today when a petition with the signatures of 300,000 people was delivered to the International Olympic Committee's headquarters in Switzerland.