There’s More To Worry About At Sochi Winter Olympics Than Twin Toilets

by
Sameera Ehteram
BBC’s Moscow correspondent Steve Rosenberg tweeted this image on saying ‘Seeing double in the Gentlemen's Loo at the Olympic Biathlon Centre’.

Twin Toilets

BBC’s Moscow correspondent Steve Rosenberg tweeted this image on saying ‘Seeing double in the Gentlemen's Loo at the Olympic Biathlon Centre’.

The photo of the communal toilets gave rise to a Twitter storm.

More than that, it was picked up by the country’s opposition leader Alexei Navalny who was incensed. Mr. Navalny also questioned  how the huge budget allocated for the winter games (around $50bn) had been spent.

It is actually equally funny and horrifying seeing these toilets. One hopes the construction isn’t yet complete and there will be at least some sort of a partition there eventually.

Then there is a nagging at the back of one’s head that one can after some effort translate into the horror of joined dots putting a bunch of athletes using these toilets and the recent Russian homophobia together and it’s not really a welcoming realization.

Not only that, if one remembers correctly, they may be the same toilets where the Russians placed CCTV cameras a few months back creating similar furor.

Although Vladimir Putin agreed to compromise his country’s ban on homosexuality for the games, the Russian President isn’t doing much to convince gay athletes that they would be welcome in the country.

Read More: Sochi Games: Is Obama Testing Putin’s Homophobia?

Instead of reassuring the visiting tourists and athletes of safety and security unconditionally, he told them that gay athletes and visitors to the Winter Olympics would not face discrimination but they should also respect Russia's culture and traditions and "leave children in peace".

Check out: Why Do Russians Hate Gays?

As if that wasn’t enough, there  are terror threats which might keep away from Sochi as well.  However keeping the latter  in mind, the communal toilets do not seem like it is that big an issue.

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