Both Germany’s And France’s Presidents Are Now Skipping The Sochi Olympics

olympicsThe 2014 Winter Olympics are far from the hottest tickets in town. In fact, they’re getting quite the international cold shoulder. Two world leaders are planning to abstain from the event in Sochi, Russia come February, while the U.S.’s involvement remains up in the air.

Last week German President Joachim Gauck announced he would not be attending the Sochi Olympics, which many interpreted as a silent stand against Russia’s oppressive anti-gay laws. While Gauck did attend the 2012 Summer and Paralympics in London, his office denies that this is a form of boycott.

“Just because somebody doesn’t travel somewhere doesn’t make it a boycott,” general secretary of German Olympic Sports Federation Michael Vesper told DW. “As far as we know, there was never a plan for Mr. Gauck to visit Sochi.”

Over the weekend, France’s President, Francoise Hollande, also announced he had RSVP’d no to Vladimir Putin’s luge party. “There are no plans to attend,” Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told Europe 1 radio (via BuzzFeed). “Top French officials have no plans to be there.”

Hollande, the driving force behind France’s marriage equality law passed earlier this year, is a proponent of LGBT rights and his absence from the Games can certainly be seen as a protest. What remains to be seen is where the U.S. falls on this issue.

The Summer Olympics were attended by a record number of world leaders, including Fierce Lady Michelle Obama. Of course, the Summer Olympics are a lot more fun — and feature a lot more skin, which is incentive for anyone. However, considering that the Winter Olympics are two months away and the White House says there are no plans for a trip there, sounds like MObama won’t be traipsing through the Sochi snow in faux fur Michael Kors.

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  • MikeE

    @SammyStone: groan

  • ouragannyc

    that’s François, not Francoise/Françoise.
    (e) at the end of a first name is usually for the name of women.

  • AuntieChrist

    It would be refreshing to see notable people actually taking a stand on this, but the only way to really make an impression is to kick them in their financial balls…It would be the only thing theses mercenary bitches understand.

  • MikeE

    @ouragannyc: Honestly, it’s a lost cause. If Queerty can’t even spell the word “intact” properly (for some odd reason, they continue to insist on writing it as two words! “in tact”), how do you expect them to get a foreign name correct, even less one with accents?

  • Cam

    “”“Just because somebody doesn’t travel somewhere doesn’t make it a boycott,” general secretary of German Olympic Sports Federation Michael Vesper told DW. “As far as we know, there was never a plan for Mr. Gauck to visit Sochi.”

    “As far as we know”.

    Yeah, nice way to cover up the fact that the Olympics just got snubbed.

    Keep up the pressure folks, starting to get results.

  • tom-ba

    President Obama, if the US cannot lead on this issue, at least follow the lead of the Presidents of Germany and France!

    Do not attend the Sochi Olympics.

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  • GMB

    President Obama didn’t attend the Vancouver 2010 games or the London 2012 games, so it’s highly unlikely that he’d attend the Sochi 2014 games.

    The US *did*, however, send VP and Dr. Jill Biden to Vancouver, and Michelle accompanied the US delegation in London.

    We’re still pretty pissed off about Russia’s amnesty for Edward Snowden, and I imagine if we sent no high-ranking officials, the standard media line would presume that it was a retaliation for the Snowden treatment, not the anti-gay treatment…

    … unless the President decided to specifically address it. And considering his ballsiness lately on LGBT issues, I wouldn’t be surprised if he did. Obama could very well be the first President to not only attend, but publicly defend LGBT citizens.

    And THAT would be amazing.

Comments are closed.