Yelena Isinbayeva
IOC Says Olympic Village's 'Mayor' Could Lose Title Over Antigay Comment

By Lucas Grindley

Originally published on Advocate.com September 05 2013 8:15 AM ET

The Russian pole vaulter who made headlines for publicly backing her country's antigay laws might lose her title as "mayor" of the Olympic Village.

Yelena Isinbayeva was asked about the so-called "gay propaganda" law during the Track & Field World Championships held in Moscow last month and said, “If we allow to promote and do all this stuff on the street, we are very afraid about our nation because we consider ourselves like normal, standard people. We just live with boys with woman, woman with boys.”

Then when that comment was reported worldwide, Isinbayeva issued a statement saying she had been misunderstood. “English is not my first language," she explained. She said her country's laws should be respected by visiting athletes but "let me state in the strongest terms that I am opposed to any discrimination against gay people.”

Now the head of the International Olympic Committee says he will consider whether Isinbayeva should lose her title as "mayor" of the Olympic Village.

"This is something we will consider in due time," IOC president Jacques Rogge said, according to the Associated Press, indicating that she could be removed.