Assessing the progress Russia has made in preparation for the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, the International Olympic Committee announced on Thursday that, despite the recent flooding problems, they found things to be coming together nicely. The IOC also addressed the controversial Russian law restricting “gay propaganda,” saying they don’t find the law to be in violation of the official Olympic charter.
The IOC’s ruling naturally angered those in the gay rights community, including Chad Griffin, President of the Human Rights Campaign. Griffin had this to say upon hearing about the IOC’s decision:
If this law doesn’t violate the IOC’s charter, then the charter is completely meaningless. The safety of millions of LGBT Russians and international travelers is at risk, and by all accounts the IOC has completely neglected its responsibility to Olympic athletes, sponsors and fans from around the world (Reuters).
Anger was also voiced about a recent decree signed by Vladimir Putin that bans any form of protesting not related to the Olympics for two months in 2014. The Games will occur during that two-month span.
Putin has promised a “brilliant” Olympics that will demonstrate the progress Russia has made since the Soviet Union fell apart, but the ongoing controversy about the propaganda law could put a huge black eye on the whole affair. We will keep you abreast of future developments.