Belarusian athlete Kristina Timanovskaya, who defied an order to fly home early from the Olympics, will hold a big press conference in Warsaw on Thursday, the opposition Belarusian sports Solidarity Foundation told Sputnik.
“Kristina arrives in Poland today, on Wednesday. On Thursday she will give a large press conference in Warsaw,” the foundation said.
The Tokyo Olympics scandal around Timanovskaya erupted last week after the athlete publicly criticized her coaches for including her in the 4 x 400m relay without her knowledge and consent, while she was supposed to take part only in the 100m and 200m sprints.
The National Olympic Committee of Belarus explained later that the coaching staff of the Belarusian athletics team decided to send the sprinter home due to her emotional state.
Timanovskaya, in turn, said the Belarusian authorities “forcibly” tried to make her return home, and that she would instead seek asylum in Europe.
In addition, the athlete appealed to the International Olympic Committee on social networks to intervene in the situation and help her.
Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Marcin Przydacz said the country has granted Timanovskaya a humanitarian visa.—AP