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International Olympic Committee Releases New Statement Promising Safetly Of LGBT Athletes

It was nearly six weeks back (In mid-June) when the International Olympic Committee released its first statement surrounding criticisms of holding the 2014 Winter Games in a country with massive human rights infractions (particularly against LGBT citizens.

Today, amidst even more international attention that has snowballed since the first statement, the IOC has released another official statement promising the safety of openly-LGBT athletes who will descend upon Sochi early next year. 

Confirmed by USA Today as well as other reputable news outlets (including RIA Novosti, the Russian-government owned news agency), the statement reads:

“As a sporting organization, what we can do is to continue to work to ensure that the Games can take place without discrimination against athletes, officials, spectators and the media,” the IOC said in an emailed statement.  “To that end, the IOC has received assurances from the highest level of government in Russia that the legislation will not affect those attending or taking part in the Games.”

The IOC added that “this legislation has just been passed into law, and it remains to be seen whether and how it will be implemented, particularly as regards the Games in Sochi.” While the law’s proponents argue that it is aimed at protecting children from harmful influences, critics allege that the move is part of a broader crackdown on Russia’s gay community. Russia has come under international criticism, including from the European Court of Human Rights, for its treatment of gay people.

(h/t: Joe)