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Farewell, Sochi! Russia closes costly, political, controversial Olympics

Sunday, February 23, 2014
SOCHI, Russia — Flushed with pride after a spectacular showing at the costliest Olympics ever, Russia celebrated 17 days of sport-driven global unity on Sunday night with a farewell show that hands off the Winter Games to their next host, Pyeongchang in South Korea. Said the head of the International Olympic Committee: "Russia delivered all what it had promised." [ Read more → ]
Darron Cummings, APA fan carries a Russian flag while walking in the Olympic Plaza during the 2014 Winter Olympics, Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.

Human rights pledge urged for future Olympic host countries

Saturday, February 22, 2014
Citing widespread dismay with Russia's anti-gay laws, a coalition of more than 30 human rights and gay rights groups is calling on the International Olympic Committee to ensure that future Olympic host countries do not have discriminatory laws on their books. [ Read more → ]
David Goldman, APVladimir Luxuria, a former Communist lawmaker in the Italian parliament and prominent crusader for transgender rights, is detained by police after entering the Shayba Arena at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Monday, Feb. 17, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.

Olympic committee defends Monday’s removal of gay rights activist

Tuesday, February 18, 2014
SOCHI, Russia — The International Olympic Committee on Tuesday defended the removal of an Italian gay rights activist from a Sochi arena, saying she was “escorted from there peacefully” and not detained. [ Read more → ]
NBCJohnny Weir at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

Here’s Johnny! Clothes make the man and vice versa

Sunday, February 16, 2014
SOCHI, Russia — He promised himself something the first time he ever laced up a pair of skates. It's the same thing Johnny Weir returns to in those quiet moments most evenings, just before the TV camera's "on-air" light flashes red. "I'm wearing makeup, a double necklace and a cream sweater," he said. "I don't feel an obligation to tone myself down. [ Read more → ]
AP (File)Billie Jean King stands with her mother, Betty Moffitt, center, and partner Ilana Kloss, left, during the dedication ceremony for the USTA National Tennis Center, re-named in King's honor, at the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York in 200.

Billie Jean King to attend Olympics’ closing ceremony in Sochi

Saturday, February 15, 2014
WASHINGTON -- Billie Jean King will attend the closing ceremony of the Sochi Olympics in Russia as part of President Barack Obama's official U.S. delegation. [ Read more → ]
David Goldman, APFormer U.S. hockey player Caitlin Cahow (left) and Olympic gold medal figure skater Brian Boitano at a news conference ahead of the opening ceremony at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.

U.S. delegation member Caitlin Cahow calls Olympic trip ‘humbling’

Saturday, February 15, 2014
SOCHI, Russia — A member of the U.S. Olympic delegation sent to Sochi by President Barack Obama said Thursday she witnessed no backlash over the inclusion of homosexuals in the group as an apparent protest over anti-gay laws in Russia. [ Read more → ]
Morry Gash, APWomen's normal hill ski jumping silver medalist Daniela Iraschko-Stolz of Austria, who is openly gay, smiles during the medals ceremony at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.

So far, nothing but silence from Olympians on Russia’s anti-gay laws

Saturday, February 15, 2014
SOCHI, Russia — A campaign to draw attention to Russia's anti-gay laws isn't gaining traction among Olympic athletes, who so far have avoided saying or doing anything to protest the measures. [ Read more → ]
Pavel Golovkin, APSilver medallist Martina Sablikova of the Czech Republic, left, and bronze medallist Russia's Olga Graf, right, applaud Ireen Wust of the Netherlands as she celebrates winning gold during the flower ceremony for the women's 3,000-meter speedskating race at the Adler Arena Skating Center during the 2014 Winter Olympics, Sunday, Feb. 9, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.

LGBT visibility in first days of Olympics includes several ‘political’ messages

Monday, February 10, 2014
LGBT visibility during the first few days of the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, included some high profile political “messages,” two gay inclusive television commercials, and several surprise choices by both Russian games organizers and openly gay athletes. [ Read more → ]
FacebookBelle Brockhoff

9 reasons to love openly gay snowboarder Belle Brockhoff

Sunday, February 9, 2014
Sometimes called "Australia's most vocal athlete about Russia's anti-gay propaganda laws in the lead up to the Winter Olympics," Belle Brockhoff is an Olympic snowboarder and a gay person. [ Read more → ]
Pavel Golovkin, APIreen Wust of the Netherlands flashes three fingers indicating her third Olympic gold medal, during the flower ceremony after winning gold in the women's 3,000-meter speedskating race at the Adler Arena Skating Center during the 2014 Winter Olympics, Sunday, Feb. 9, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.

Ireen Wüst takes gold at 3rd straight Winter Olympics

Sunday, February 9, 2014
Ireen Wust, one of only seven openly LGBT Olympic athletes competing in Sochi, claimed a speedskating gold medal at her third straight Winter Olympics, knocking off defending champion Martina Sablikova in the 3,000 meters Sunday. [ Read more → ]
David Goldman, APDavid Pichler, an American diver and former Sydney Games team captain, shows off his Olympic rings tattoo during a television interview on Sat., Feb. 8, while meeting with locals at the Mayak cabaret, the most reputable gay club in Sochi, Russia, host to 2014 Winter Olympics.

Sochi’s Mayak cabaret, a safe place for gays in the Olympic host city

Sunday, February 9, 2014
The mascara-lined eyes of a petite man dressed in a tuxedo greet visitors after they buzz at the armor-plated door of a one-story building. Welcome to the Mayak cabaret, the most reputable gay club in Sochi, and one of the few safe places for gays in the Olympic host city to meet. [ Read more → ]
Matthias Schrader, APAustria's Daniela Iraschko-Stolz soars through the air during a women's ski jumping training session at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia.

Gay Olympic ski jumper says protests aren’t worth it because ‘no one cares’

Sunday, February 9, 2014
KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia — An openly gay women's ski jumper says protests against Russia's law banning homosexual "propaganda" aimed at minors aren't worth it because "no one cares." [ Read more → ]
Sergei Grits, APBritain's James Woods takes a jump during ski slopestyle training at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park ahead of the 2014 Winter Olympics, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia.

Mums the word – No talk of gay rights in Sochi, please… we’re Olympians

Saturday, February 8, 2014
Olympic competition first, gay rights maybe later. Plenty of athletes made clear before traveling to Sochi how unhappy they were about gay rights being curtailed in Russia, particularly with its law banning gay "propaganda." But now in Sochi, there has not been a squeak of public protest from the 2,870 Olympians - either at venues or at Friday's opening ceremony. [ Read more → ]
Armando Trovati, APSweden's Anja Paerson is carried on her teammates' shoulders after completing an alpine ski in the women's World Cup super-G in Schladming, Austria on March 15, 2012. Shortly after retiring in 2012, Paerson announced that she was in a long-term relationship with her girlfriend Filippa, ending years of speculation regarding her private life.

Retired Olympic medalist Anja Paerson speaks out on gay rights

Saturday, February 8, 2014
Anja Paerson is embracing her post-competition career with the same kind of enthusiasm she showed off with her customary, celebratory belly flops on the snow. After all, the Swedish skiing great has a lot to be excited about these days. She's a mother. She's working on TV, and she's back at the Olympics. [ Read more → ]
Alexei Nikolsky, RIA-Novosti  (Presidential Press Service)Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Asia leaders join Sochi, not put off by Russia’s human rights record

Saturday, February 8, 2014
When top Western leaders decided to stay away from Russian President Vladimir Putin's Winter Olympics, he wasn't exactly left friendless: he has the heads of leading Asian nations and others to help show the world that not everyone is put off by his human rights record and the anti-gay law he championed. [ Read more → ]
Getty Images

The Olympics: Why I’m Tuning Out

Friday, February 7, 2014
For months, President Vladimir Putin and leaders of the International Olympic Committee have been dismissing world concerns over Russia’s anti-gay laws and violence with assurances that LGBT athletes and spectators will be safe in Sochi. They’ve offered no such peace of mind to LGBT Russians, who won’t have the luxury of leaving the host country after the Olympics are over. Behind the facade of a nation sanitized for TV, gay Russians have become prey to hate-filled fellow citizens who call their anti-gay hunts “safaris.” I refuse to be one more TV viewer... [ Read more → ]
Sochi-opening-1

Russia kicks off Sochi Games with hope and hubris

Friday, February 7, 2014
SOCHI, Russia — A Russia in search of global vindication kicked off the Sochi Olympics looking more like a Russia that likes to party, with a pulse-raising opening ceremony about fun and sports instead of terrorism, coddling despots and gay rights. [ Read more → ]
Yuri TimofeevGay rights activist are arrested in Moscow on Friday.

Gay rights activists arrested in separate incidents in Moscow, St. Petersburg

Friday, February 7, 2014
ST. PETERSBURG, Russia -- Russian police arrested several gay rights activists protesting in St. Petersburg and Moscow on the opening day of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. [ Read more → ]
Mark Humphrey, APRussian duo t.A.T.u. Lena Katina, third from left, and Yulia Volkova, second from left, perform on stage before the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014.

Pseudo-lesbian pop duo awaits viewers of Sochi Olympics opening

Friday, February 7, 2014
SOCHI, Russia -- The pseudo-lesbian Russian pop duo t.A.T.u. is performing at the opening ceremony of the Sochi Olympics, with a song about two schoolgirls in love. [ Read more → ]
Alexei Nikolsky, Presidential Press Service, RIA Novosti (AP)Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte speak during their meeting in the Bocharov Ruchei residence in Sochi, Russia, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014.

Putin: Sports should be focus of Sochi Olympics, not debate over gay rights

Friday, February 7, 2014
SOCHI, Russia — Russian President Vladimir Putin says sports should take center stage during the Winter Olympics and not debate over gay rights. [ Read more → ]
Dmitry Lovetsky, AP

Four gay rights activists arrested in Russia during Olympics protest

Friday, February 7, 2014
ST. PETERSBURG, Russia -- Russian police have arrested four gay rights activists protesting in St. Petersburg on the opening day of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. [ Read more → ]
Morry Gash, APMembers of a Russian honor guard raise an Olympic flag during a welcoming ceremony at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.

Sochi’s opening show: Let Putin’s games begin

Friday, February 7, 2014
SOCHI, Russia — It's designed to celebrate a millennium of Russian might and this country's modern rebound, and kick off two weeks of extraordinary human endeavors and planetary sportsmanship. But the ceremony opening the Sochi Olympics on Friday, more than anything, will be about one man: Vladimir Putin. [ Read more → ]
Barack-Obama

Obama: Sending openly gay athletes to Sochi was a ‘very clear’ message

Friday, February 7, 2014
WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama said Thursday that he had included openly gay athletes in the U.S. Olympic delegation to send a message to Russia that the U.S. would not conform to discrimination in sports or anywhere else. [ Read more → ]
Pavel Golovkin, APThe Olympic Cauldron, left, is lit during a test between the Bolshoy Ice Dome, top, and the Iceberg Skating Palace, foreground, early Thursday morning, Feb. 6, 2014, in Sochi, Russia, prior to the start of the 2014 Winter Olympics.

Olympic viewing: Off-ice issues, terror threats, LGBT rights jump to forefront

Thursday, February 6, 2014
A day before athletes begin filing in to Sochi's Fisht Stadium for Friday's opening ceremony, NBC is already being tested on how it will cover the two biggest non-sports issues of the Winter Olympics. [ Read more → ]
Queer nationQueer nation activists protest outside the Russian consulate in New York City on Thursday.

Gay rights activists protest outside NYC Russian consulate

Thursday, February 6, 2014
NEW YORK -- More than 100 members of the gay activist group Queer Nation and others who oppose the Russian government’s continued attacks on human rights, including the rights of LGBT Russians, marked the opening of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games with a raucous protest directly in front of the Russian consulate in New York City at noon today. [ Read more → ]
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