The International Olympic Committee said in a statement addressed to its members that it has been assured by Russian government that a recent law against gay rights activism will not affect those associated with or attending the Sochi Olympics in February.
“The International Olympic Committee is clear that sport is a human right and should be available to all regardless of race, sex or sexual orientation as stated in the Olympic Charter,” the statement read. “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.
“As you know, 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. As a sports organisation, 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. To that end, the IOC has received a number of assurances from the highest level of government in Russia that the legislation will not affect those attending or taking part in the Games.”
President Barack Obama has voiced disagreement with the Russian law enacted in June that bans “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations” to minors. He also does not believe in a boycott.
“I do not think it’s appropriate to boycott the Olympics,” Obama told reporters Friday. “We’ve got a bunch of Americans out there who are training hard, who are doing everything they can to succeed.”
Video: Obama: No tolerance for Russia treating gays, lesbians differently
Michael Phelps said Thursday that he had to keep his June marriage to Nicole Johnson “hush-hush.”
Phelps and Johnson, who got engaged in February 2015, were married June 13, though Phelps had been saying all summer and into the fall that they were not yet married.
“You guys probably already saw the article that was posted [about the marriage],” Phelps said, widening his eyes and sticking the tip of his tongue out while golfing shirtless with former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis. “I’ve been married for a while, been married for while, couple months. I had to keep it secret from y’all. I had to keep it hush-hush from you guys. Nicole and I are married. We are officially married.”
Phelps and Johnson welcomed baby boy Boomer on May 5.
“Why is it a secret? Just because. … Baby No. 2 may be coming soon, who knows though,” Phelps said.
VIDEO: Phelps in ‘Call of Duty’ trailer
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A former gymnast on the U.S. women’s national team is the latest athlete to accuse a longtime team doctor of sexual abuse.
But she’s the first to allege renowned husband-and-wife coaches Bela and Martha Karolyi knew about the abuse and did nothing to stop it.
The lawsuit filed Thursday in Los Angeles contends Dr. Larry Nassar repeatedly sexually abused the now-24-year-old gymnast when she was on the team from 2006 to 2011.
It says the Karolyis, and the current and former presidents of USA Gymnastics knew of molestations committed by Nassar before and during his employment, “yet chose to allow him to remain unsupervised,” allowing further abuse.
Nassar’s lawyer and the Karolyis didn’t respond to messages Thursday. Nassar’s lawyer has previously denied abuse allegations by two other gymnasts.
USA Gymnastics is also named in the suit. The Indiana-based governing body denies wrongdoing.
MORE: Michigan State fires Nassar after sexual abuse accusations