Sports Minister Amélie Oudéa-Castera announces the opening of an investigation after reports of abuse
In its program aired on Sunday, Stade 2 collected the testimonies of six former athletes of the French gymnastics team who reveal facts of abuse.
Invited to the set of the Stade 2 program on Sunday 14 May, during which it was broadcast abuse investigation on former gymnasts, the Minister of Sport and the Olympic and Paralympic Games, Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, announced the opening of an investigation into the reported facts. Six former gymnasts, four of whom have spoken out, reported physical or psychological abuse by a senior official of the French artistic gymnastics team and a coach.
Former gymnast Valentine Sabatou explains on camera that she was forced to participate in a rally at the age of 16 despite a broken ankle, when the coach was “aware” of this injury. Marine Petit, 15 at the time, said she was slapped by the senior official after she attended a party around silver medalist Thomas Bouhail during the Beijing Games in 2008.
“What is needed is that an investigation can be opened and we will do it tomorrow (Monday) morning with the teams of the Ministry of Sport”, he reacted after the transmission of the testimonies. He also showed his willingness to receive the president of the French Gymnastics Federation, James Blateau, and his DTN (national technical director).
The president of the Federation gives “his support” to the victims
Amélie Oudéa-Castéra also asked “zero tolerance” and more management “human” of sports performance. “It is not possible to let coaches exercise to high levels of responsibility that mix requirement and violence, discipline with abuse.” He took the opportunity to encourage athletes and federations to do so “report behavior” of violence and abuse with the Ministry of Sport.
The president of the French gymnastics federation, James Blateau, who did not answer questions from France Télévisions, intervened in a statement released on Sunday evening. He explains to take “complete measure of testimonials” and bring his own “full support for the victims”. “As a result, I convened an exceptional meeting of the federation’s board of directors on Monday to discuss the measures to be taken. I will have the opportunity to speak after our meeting with the sports minister, Amélie Oudéa-Castera, to specify the measures taken by the federation to stop all forms of violence.Adds.