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IPFS News Link • Japan

Taking the knee for Black Lives Matter will be BANNED at Tokyo Olympics...

• https://www.dailymail.co, By REUTERS REPORTER

Taking a knee during the Tokyo Olympics or lifting a fist in support of racial equality will be punished as the International Olympic Committee on Wednesday maintained its ban on athletes' protests inside stadiums, at ceremonies and on podiums.

The IOC's Rule 50 forbids any kind of 'demonstration or political, religious or racial propaganda' in venues and any other Olympic area and the Games body concluded the rule should be maintained following an athlete consultation.

Against the backdrop of the Black Lives Matter movement protesting racial injustice, calls have increased in recent months for a change to that rule that would allow athletes to protest.

Some international federation chiefs, including World Athletics' President Sebastian Coe, have said that athletes should have the right to make gestures of political protest during the Games.

The IOC's Athletes' Commission chief Kirsty Coventry, who led a review of the rule, said the majority of athletes consulted were against any protests within the fields of play or the podiums.

'I would not want something to distract from my competition and take away from that. That is how I still feel today,' Coventry, a former Olympic swimming champion for Zimbabwe, said in a online presentation of the Rule 50 consultation results.