On Wednesday afternoon an article published by the Times of London stated that reigning 800m Olympic and World Champion Caster Semenya would be argued as a biological male by the IAAF at their upcoming five-day hearing at the Court of Arbitration of Sport.
The CAS will be looking into athletes with “differences of sexual development” (DSD) and their decision will likely impact the rules surrounding transgender athletes. Following the article by the Times, the IAAF released a statement stating that it was not their intent to classify Semenya as a male, but rather reintroduce the conversation of testosterone levels in DSD athletes.
On Wednesday afternoon the IAAF responded, “The IAAF is not classifying any DSD (Differences of Sexual Development) athlete as male. To the contrary, we accept their legal sex without question, and permit them to compete in the female category. However if a DSD athlete has testes and male levels of testosterone, they get the same increases in bone and muscle size and strength and increases in hemoglobin that a male gets when they go through puberty, which is what gives men such a performance advantage over women. Therefore, to preserve fair competition in the female category, it is necessary to require DSD athletes to reduce their testosterone down to female levels before they compete at international level.”
Statement from Caster Semenya and her lawyers in response to @iaaforg.
“I just want to run naturally, the way I was born. It is not fair that I am told I must change. It is not fair that people question who I am.”
— Katrina Karkazis (@Karkazis) February 14, 2019
On Thursday morning, Semenya and her lawyers responded to the reporting regarding the upcoming CAS meeting. Semenya said, “I just want to run naturally, the way I was born. It is not fair that I am told I must change. It is not fair that people question who I am.”