Russian activists urge IOC head Bach on gay rights
IOC President Thomas Bach met with Russian gay rights activists
who urged an investigation before the Sochi Olympics into national
laws banning ”gay propaganda.”
International gay rights group AllOut said Russian campaigners
asked Bach in Paris on Saturday ”to launch an independent
investigation on the legal implications of the anti-gay laws in
effect in Russia during the Olympic Games.”
”A list of precise questions about the implication of the
anti-gay laws, to help frame the investigation, were submitted and
received by the IOC president,” AllOut said in a statement. ”The
IOC will announce later whether or not the investigation will be
The International Olympic Committee and its sponsors have been
pressed to take a stronger position against Russia after President
Vladimir Putin signed a law in June banning promotion of
”nontraditional sexual relations” to minors.
”The IOC must call for an end to the discriminatory laws and
ensure that the Olympics never again take place in a city where
athletes are silenced because of who they are or who they love,”
AllOut executive director Andre Banks said.
The IOC has previously said Moscow assured that athletes and
spectators will not face discrimination at the Feb. 7-23 Winter
Bach, an Olympic gold medalist in fencing, was in Paris to
attend a centenary party for the sport’s governing body.
The IOC issued a statement Saturday noting Bach’s meeting with
France President Francois Hollande at the Elysee Palace, though it
did not refer directly to the issue of gay rights.