IOC Official: Terrorism Only an Issue Because No One Cares About Anti-Gay Law
A Canadian official from the International Olympic Committee says the concern over terrorist activities at the upcoming Sochi Olympics is the result of the media losing interest in Russia's highly controversial anti-gay laws.
"Nobody has got anything else to write about and for some reason as they have sort of moved away from the anti-gay stuff -- I think it's not drawing the kind of attention that they wanted," Dick Pound told Canada's Metro News.
Pound said other countries have "far harsher laws" regarding homosexuals than Russia and little is written on that.
"In Malaysia, you can be put to death. In Nigeria, you can be put in jail for God knows how long," Pound told Metro News. "So it's a target of convenience with respect to Russia, not that I approve of the law, but putting it on a scale of 1-10 of odious laws, it's not way up there near 10."
Pound said much of the anti-Russia gay stand emanates from the U.S., where only a handful of states allow same-sex marriage. (Seventeen states currently allow legal gay marriage).
"So whose ox is getting gored here?" Pound said.
In August the CBC reported that Pound criticized Russia's anti-gay propaganda law, but said that calls for a boycott of the Olympic Games were misplaced.
"I think it's a shame that in this day and age such a law has been adopted," he told The Associated Press in a telephone interview. "But I do not think that is a reason for the entire world to refrain from going to the Olympics, and those who urge that are being very free with the sacrifice of other people in their own interest."