The International Olympic Committee gives athletes a space to express their political or social views during the Tokyo Olympics. They may do this before competitions and also in interviews or on social media. However, any form of political or religious protest or propaganda during competitions and celebrations on the podium or in the athletes’ village is still prohibited.
Thus, the IOC loosened the fixed rule 50 of the Olympic Charter. This rule prohibits “any form of political, religious or ethnic propaganda” during the Games. But after consulting about 3,500 athletes ahead of the Tokyo event, the guidelines were revised.
In practical terms, this means that athletes are allowed to express themselves in the Games for the first time after, for example, leaving the contact room or while presenting. Then kneeling or raising the arm with a clenched fist is allowed as expressions of anti-discrimination. “In expressing their views, athletes and their fellow athletes are expected to respect applicable laws and Olympic values,” the IOC said in a statement.
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