Support The Moscow Times!

Now is the time to support independent reporting from Russia!

Contribute Today

Hollande Will Not Attend Sochi Games, Minister Says

PARIS — Neither French President Francois Hollande nor any top French official will attend the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, the country's Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Sunday.

Fabius offered no explanation for the move.

The decision to hold the Winter Olympics in Russia has been criticized in France due to concerns about human rights abuses and a law passed in June that bans "gay propaganda," which critics say discriminates against homosexuals.

"There are no plans to attend," Fabius told Europe1 radio, referring to Hollande and himself. "Top French officials have no plans to be there."

German President Joachim Gauck's office announced last week that he would not be attending the Games, and the government's human rights commissioner praised Gauck's decision as a "wonderful gesture."

Read more