WTF: Greek Triple Jumper Removed From Olympic Team After Making Racist Comments on Twitter
Greek triple jumper Voula Papachristou was banished from the Olympic Games on Wednesday after making racist comments and expressing right-wing sentiments on Twitter.
Papachristou was scheduled to fly to London next week from her training base in Athens when the Hellenic Olympic Committee - Greek's Olympic federation - made the decision to expel her from the team.
Papachristou, 23, made a racist and tasteless comment on her Twitter account, @papaxristoutj, that highlighted the number of African immigrants in Greece.
"With so many Africans in Greece … at least the West Nile mosquitos will eat homemade food!!!," Papachristou wrote. She also reposted a comment from controversial Greek politician Ilias Kasidiaris, who has strongly criticized his government's "soft" immigration policy.
The West Nile virus was first discovered in Uganda, but cases have recently been found during the European summer. Papachristou's tweet was met with a flood of angry responses, but she didn't respond until Wednesday, when it became clear she might lose her spot in the Olympics.
"I would like to express my heartfelt apologies for the unfortunate and tasteless joke I published on my personal Twitter account," she said. "I am very sorry and ashamed for the negative responses I triggered, since I never wanted to offend anyone, or to encroach human rights."