IOC VP Anita DeFrantz cautions Olympic athletes not to protest on the podium


July 22, 2021 | Mike Fish

As the Tokyo Olympics begin, the highest-ranking American on the International Olympic Committee cautioned athletes that the medal podium is no place for political statements, and suggested the IOC itself has no business in politics — even when a host country, such as China, home to the Winter Games in February, stands accused of genocide.

The strikingly blunt apolitical case made by Anita DeFrantz, an IOC vice president, mirrors the position of the Switzerland-based association that controls the Games, and comes as the delayed Tokyo Olympics play out amid a pandemic-related state of emergency and lingering global social unrest.

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