Aug 4, 2021 - World
Belarus sprinter Krystsina Tsimanouskaya departs Tokyo for Vienna
Belarusian sprinter Krystsina Tsimanouskaya left Japan on Wednesday, aboard a plane bound for Vienna after refusing national team orders to fly home amid concerns for her safety.
Driving the news: The 24-year-old Olympian had sought refuge at the Polish embassy in Tokyo, where she was granted a humanitarian visa. But she changed flights at the last minute and boarded an Austrian Airlines flight for Vienna, an airport official told reporters.
- She had spent two nights in Poland's embassy before departing for Austria's capital.
The big picture: Tsimanouskaya refused national team orders to board a flight home after Belarus officials took her to Tokyo's Haneda airport Sunday following her criticism of Belarusian coaches.
- She told AP earlier Tuesday that officials from her country made it clear that she "would definitely face some form of punishment" if she returned home.
Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.