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Belarusian Olympic Sprinter Receives Polish Visa After Refusing to Return Home

August 2, 2021, 12:00 pm
Belarusian Olympic Sprinter Receives Polish Visa After Refusing to Return Home
TOKYO—A Belarusian Olympic athlete received a Polish visa after she resisted her team’s attempts to send her home from Tokyo against her will in the middle of a public dispute, Poland’s deputy foreign minister said Monday. The International Olympic Committee said Monday that sprinter Krystsina Tsimanouskaya was safe and being assisted by authorities in Tokyo. Polish Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Marcin Przydacz tweeted later that she had been granted a humanitarian visa. “Poland will do whatever is necessary to help her to continue her sporting career,” he said. The Belarusian Sport Solidarity Foundation, which supports opposition athletes and has been assisting Ms. Tsimanouskaya in Tokyo, said the athlete planned to fly to Poland, which borders Belarus, on Wednesday. Ms. Tsimanouskaya said Sunday that members of the Belarusian team in Tokyo took her to the airport in a bid to send her home against her will after she publicly criticized the country’s national Olympic coaches. Ms. Tsimanouskaya, worried for her safety if she returned to Belarus, didn’t board the flight and appealed to the IOC for help.
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