The International Olympic Committee has approved a transgender athlete to participate in the upcoming Tokyo Games.
The IOC ruled on Saturday that 43-year-old Laurel Hubbard, a biological male, can compete in the women’s weightlifting super-heavyweight class for New Zealand and that her inclusion does not violate existing rules on the books.
She is on her way to becoming the first transgender athlete to compete in the Games.
“The rules for qualification have been established by the International Weightlifting Federation prior to the start of qualification,” IOC boss Thomas Bach said during a new conference call. lbl reported. “These rules apply, and you cannot change the rules during ongoing competitions.”
Bach stressed that the rules were being evaluated now and would be reviewed at a later date.
“The IOC is in an investigation stage with all the various stakeholders … to review these rules and finally come up with some guidelines, which cannot be rules because it is a question where there is no one-size-fits-all. -Not all is the solution,” he said. said. “It varies from sport to sport.”
Hubbard’s involvement in sports has drawn sharp criticism from some who say he would have an unfair advantage with bone and muscle development after going through puberty as a male.
Transgender athletes have been officially allowed to compete as women in the Olympic Games since 2015.
Allowing transgender women in sports has become a hot button issue in the United States. Several conservative-leaning states, such as Florida and Montana, bar trans athletes from middle and high school sports. Pro-trans activists have said such laws are discriminatory.