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Olympic Committee President: We are powerless to Russia’s anti-gay ‘propaganda’ laws

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  1. Don’t put seemingly quoted words in the headline (“powerless”) that don’t even occur in the article. This has a very specific meaning and if the IOC haven’t said it then it shouldn’t be used.

    1. Agreed!

      “Olympic Committee President claims committee is powerless to alter Russia’s anti-gay ‘propaganda’ laws” would have been acceptable AND would have just as effectively caught readers’ attention.

    2. Good catch, Bob, and agreed.

  2. You can make the statement that the political foundation of any nation will be considered – that nations who engage in bigotry or discrimination are no longer welcome to participate in the Olympic movement. You can say that no bids will be considered in future, and that you have a defined wish that the games could be withdrawn and re-targeted to a country that does not wallow in this kind of blood-spattered hatred.

    Time is coming to ostracise nations who don’t fit a wider world community standard of universal human rights and equality. If that rules out a lot of African nations, much of the middle east, and now Russia, then so be it.

  3. I would have thought that the organisation which AWARDS the Olympic Games also has ‘the power’ to remove them especially if the host country is in DIRECT contravention of the organisation’s charter. If THEY don’t have the power to act – who does?

    1. THEY DO –
      Rule 36 of the OLympic charter states, part 2

      “”2. In the event of non compliance with the Olympic Charter or other regulations or
      instructions of the IOC, or a breach of the obligations entered into by the NOC, the
      OCOG or the host city, the IOC is entitled to withdraw, at any time and with immediate
      effect, the organisation of the Olympic Games from the host city, the OCOG and the
      NOC, without prejudice to compensation for any damage thereby caused to the IOC.
      In such a case, the NOC, the OCOG, the host city, the country of the host city and all
      their governmental or other authorities, or any other party, whether at any city, local,
      state, provincial, other regional or national level, shall have no claim for any form of
      compensation against the IOC.””

      Its up to the host city and the government of the country to pick up any financial repercussions from their non compliance to the Olympic Charter – and they agree to this when the Games is awarded to the host city.

    2. well said

  4. Mihangel apYrs 5 Sep 2013, 11:49am

    “But one should not forget that we are staging the games in a sovereign state and the IOC cannot be expected to have an influence on the sovereign affairs of a country.”

    I seem to remember that a special Act went through parliament to accommodate IOC demands…

  5. Rogge has said: “the IOC cannot be expected to have an influence on the sovereign affairs of a country.”

    Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!

    We say we DO expect the IOC to have an influence on the sovereign affairs of a country WHERE those sovereign affairs blatantly stigmatise the basic human rights of that state’s homosexual population.

    Mr. Rogge, the IOC must have the GUMPTION to exert an influence on the “sovereign affairs” of such a country!


    And the exercise of moral responsibility.

  6. Benjamin Bee 5 Sep 2013, 12:13pm

    Move the Olympic games from Russia! Or the winter games are going to fail.

  7. Grow a spine Mr. Rogge. you have the power to remove the games. Don’t you realise when you have been “played”.
    Time and again the Russian government have stated they WILL enforce their discriminatory law (passed since the games were awarded) against gay people who indicate they are gay for just being and acting just as their hetrosexual brothers and sisters do! and also against those who voice dissent against their unfair treatment. That IS discrimination Mr. Rogge. deal with it and apply your rules. Remove the games from Sochi.

  8. Jock S. Trap 5 Sep 2013, 12:16pm

    There was me think the Olympics was supposed to be about fairness and equality, not come going back into the closet.

    London 2012 opened up the Olympics more than ever before only for the lie of Russia to take things back… way back.

  9. Powerless to legislate in Russia, yes you are. But you can withdraw the Games from Russia for being savage, inhumane and against all the Games stand for. once again money and bullying win. IOC, your hands are covered in the blood of the bashed, the tortured and those who are pushed to suicide. How you can swallow your caviar and sleep at night is beyond me. SHAME.

  10. Your article should give a means of contacting the IOC to complain and protest to them.

  11. This man is utterly, utterly hopeless. Did anyone here is response to an interviewer’s question during the olympics of ‘But why do you need to stay in the Hilton hotel, the most expensive hotel in London using taxpayer’s money’? His reply was ‘We need accommodation’. Like I say, he is utterly, utterly hopeless.

  12. Perhaps if they had considered this when the law was being pushed through, then maybe they wouldn’t have been in this mess?

    It wasn’t exactly a surprise, the law was being discussed for weeks all around the world before it was passed. The IOC should have sent a group to see Putin and tell them in no uncertain terms that such a law would breach the principles of the IOC charter and they would then have to look at moving the games to another location.

    This could have all been achieved a long time ago, if only this man and his bunch of wealthy and ignorant friends in the IOC had bothered to pay any attention.

    There are no excuses for this. Russia is in breach of the IOC’s own charter. They failed to take action when they could have because it would cost them money to move it.

    The IOC charter is pointless and might as well be used as toilet paper.

  13. Oh wow, this is exceptionally shameful!

    ““But one should not forget that we are staging the games in a sovereign state and the IOC cannot be expected to have an influence on the sovereign affairs of a country.””

    What about South Africa then??? They must think we have the memory and intellect of fish! What an absolute cop out. I’ve never cared much for the Olympics but this pretty much cements my lack of interest for life. I won’t forget this easily ! Spineless, money hungry people who are happy to have LGBT athletes but unwilling to protect them. Not to mention how they are sponsored by Mcdonalds & Coca Cola – the irony of which would be hilarious if it wasn’t so grotesque.

  14. Boycott the Sochi Olympics. Move the Winter Games to Vancouver or Norway or Sweden.

  15. barriejohn 5 Sep 2013, 2:50pm

    He’s making himself look stupid now. He has already said that the law is not compatible with the Olympic Charter. The IOC is not a political organization per se, so the only logical course of action is to have nothing to do with Russia until such time as they change their minds. Why can he not see that?

  16. Michaelandfred 5 Sep 2013, 2:51pm

    Bullsh*t. They OWN the games. Any country is nothing but a location profiting off of them. A huge money and propaganda making machine off of the event.

    While its true they can’t force Russia to change it’s laws, the control over when, how and where the games occur is entirely in the hands of the IOC. As is the threat of possible punishment of athletes protesting.

  17. The IOC was not powerless to choose another country to hold the Olympics in.

    Not buying it!

  18. “But one should not forget that we are staging the games in a sovereign state and the IOC cannot be expected to have an influence on the sovereign affairs of a country.”

    I call foul on that.
    Sovereignty didn’t stop the IOC from demanding Arab nations include women in their teams, despite what their state laws prohibiting female participation in sports.
    Sovereignty did nothing to stop the IOc from banning ANY and ALL South African participation from between 1964 until 1992 over it’s Apartheid laws.

    The IOC can throw “sovereign affairs” to the wind and push forward with a policy of excluding any nation that would itself exclude athlete and potential athletes from participating in the games.
    I think the IOC just doesn’t respect or care about LGBT people who suffer under laws written with the intention of harming them.

  19. The IOC members are wined & dined & treated like royalty all over the world because they exercise so much commercial power never mind the millions they earn,it seems that is all they care about.

  20. Staircase2 5 Sep 2013, 11:29pm


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