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IOC Statement Regarding The Sochi 2014 Winter Games

By International Olympic Committee | Aug. 22, 2013, 3:55 p.m. (ET)

The International Olympic Committee has today received strong written reassurances from the Russian government that everyone will be welcome at the Games in Sochi regardless of their sexual orientation.

In his letter deputy Prime Minister Kozak underlines that ‘Russia has committed itself to comply strictly with the provisions of the Olympic Charter and its fundamental principles, according to item 6 of which "any form of discrimination with regard to a country or a person on grounds of race, religion, politics, gender or otherwise is incompatible with belonging to the Olympic Movement."

He adds that, ‘The Russian Federation guarantees the fulfillment of its obligations before the International Olympic Committee in its entirety.’

The IOC is clear that sport is a human right and should be available to all regardless of race, sex or sexual orientation. The Games themselves should be open to all, free of discrimination, and that applies to spectators, officials, media and of course athletes. We would oppose in the strongest terms any move that would jeopardise this principle.