Athlete is Withdrawn From Olympics for Racist Tweet
Greek triple jumper Paraskevi Papachristou (pictured far right) will be waiting another four years before she gets her chance to represent Greece in the Olympics. She was withdrawn from the London Olympics on Wednesday after tweeting a "joke" many deemed racist. What'd she tweet?
With so many Africans in Greece... the West Nile mosquitoes will at least eat homemade food!!!
She later apologized saying it was a "joke" she had originally seen on facebook. But Greek mission chief Isidoros Kouvelos was not laughing. He told SKAI TV.
She showed no respect for a basic Olympic value and unfortunately she is out. She made a mistake and in life we pay for our mistakes.
According to Reuters, Greece has struggled with an influx of illegal immigrants from Africa and Asia and has seen a sharp rise in anti-immigrant sentiment amid its economic crisis. That compounded by their recent small outbreak of the West Nile virus in Athens set the stage for this racist "joke".
Greece's disease control and prevention body said just this month one man has died and at least five other cases have been reported,
Papachristou response is indeed contrite saying: "I am very sorry and ashamed for the negative responses I triggered, since I never wanted to offend anyone. My dream is connected to the Olympic Games and I could not possibly participate if I did not respect their values."