The International Olympic Committee says Belarusian sprinters who have taken refuge in Tokyo are “safe”


Tokyo Olympics update

According to Olympic officials, the Belarusian sprinter who participated in the Tokyo Olympics claimed that it was “safe” for her to be forcibly taken to the airport for criticizing the national coach.

Krystsina Tsimanouskaya stayed at a hotel in Tokyo’s Haneda Airport after Sunday. Seek “protection” According to the International Olympic Committee, from local authorities.

Japanese police, Tokyo 2020 officials and a representative of the UN refugee agency UNHCR were also with the runner-up, who was originally scheduled to participate in the preliminaries of the women’s 200m event on Monday.

“She is safe,” said Mark Adams, the chief spokesperson of the International Olympic Committee.

Japanese government spokesman Katsunobu Kato said that Tokyo is cooperating with the International Olympic Committee and other local authorities to determine the athlete’s intentions.

System of Alexander LukashenkoThe authoritarian leader of Belarus was severely criticized after deceivingly declared victory in last year’s presidential election and began brutally suppressing protesters and rival supporters.

The International Olympic Committee prohibits Lukashenko from participating in the Tokyo Olympics with officials from other countries, including his son Victor, the president of the country’s Olympic Committee.

The sanctions were imposed after Belarusian athletes accused the authorities of political discrimination and imprisonment. In addition to payments made directly to athletes, the IOC has also frozen payments to the Belarusian Olympic Committee.

Svyatlana ZihanusskayaThe leader of the Belarusian opposition party told the Financial Times that “Krystsina Tsimanouskaya’s experience is part of a wider repression of athletes in Belarus. Today, any criticism of the authorities-even sports leadership-is considered an attack on the government.”

Tsimanouskaya used her social media account Punishment coach She said that because other Belarusian athletes did not complete enough anti-doping tests, she registered for events that she had not participated in, such as the 4x400m relay.

The International Olympic Committee said it is still working to determine how Zimanusskaya left the athlete’s village on Sunday. According to the report, the sprinter appeared to be heading to the airport with about 16 Belarusian athletes, who will leave Japan after the race.

Zimanusskaya was originally scheduled to participate in the women’s 200m race after participating in the preliminaries of the 100m race on Friday. The International Olympic Committee stated that it is unclear whether other Belarusian officials or coaches accompanied her to the airport.

Images and videos circulated on social media sites by Belarusian opposition activists appeared to show that Tsimanouskaya refused to board the plane.

The Belarusian Olympic Committee did not respond to a request for comment, but a statement from the organization stated that the coach had removed Zimanusskaya from the game based on the doctor’s advice regarding her “emotional and psychological state.”

In response, Zimanusskaya posted the statement on Instagram with the message: “This is a lie.”

“I asked the International Olympic Committee for help, they [Belarusian officials] Pressure is being put on me and they are trying to take me out of the country without my consent,” Zimanusskaya said in a video message reportedly recorded from the airport on Sunday night.

The International Olympic Committee stated that it has asked the Belarusian Olympic Committee to submit a report before deciding whether to take further action. The Japanese police did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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