Birmingham Commonwealth Games open to allowing Pride flag on podium


FILE PHOTO: People carry the flags of the Commonwealth countries at the launch of the Commonwealth Games baton relay, outside Buckingham Palace in London, Britain October 7, 2021. Victoria Jones/Pool via REUTERS

(Reuters) - Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) chief executive Katie Sadleir said organisers were open to the idea of athletes bringing the Pride flag onto the podium at next year's event in Birmingham.

"We will be talking to athletes over the next six months in the lead-up to the Games about what that may or may not look like -- but certainly, we are open to that," Sadleir told the BBC.

Speaking at the launch of the Commonwealth Sport Pride Network, an initiative aimed at bringing together LGBTQ+ athletes, coaches and organisers from Commonwealth nations, Sadleir said the CGF "absolutely embraced" athletes' freedom of expression but added that it would refer to the code of conduct.

"We have a code of conduct and there are some aspects about respect for other competitors and where you do what you do," Sadleir said.

"From the perspective of advocates and freedom of expression, it's something that we are thoroughly, thoroughly embracing."

The 2022 Commonwealth Games are scheduled for July 28 to Aug. 8.

(Reporting by Aadi Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

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