The Swiss Federal Supreme Court has dismissed Caster Semenya’s appeal to lift World Athletic’s controversial rules on testosterone levels in women athletes.
The ruling limits the testosterone levels women athletes may have in certain events, ranging from 400 metres to 1500 metre races. Athletes must have a testosterone concentration of less than five nanomoles per litre continuously for at least 12 months. Those with high testosterone levels are required to take medication to internationally compete in the races.
According to the Swiss Federal Supreme Court, there have found no reason to overturn the ruling established by the Court of Arbitration for Sport in 2019.
“After many months of deliberation, the Federal Supreme Court of Switzerland has refused to set aside a 2019 ruling against Olympic gold medallist Caster Semenya by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS),” the court said in a statement.
“The Swiss Supreme Court found that World Athletics’ requirement of subjecting certain female athletes to drug or surgical interventions as a precondition to compete in women’s 400m to 1500m events does not amount to a violation of Swiss public policy,” the court added.
“Based on these findings, the Cas decision cannot be challenged,” the tribunal said. “Fairness in sport is a legitimate concern and forms a central principle of sporting competition. It is one of the pillars on which competition is based.”
Semenya has previously stated she refuses to take medication to be allowed to take part in competitions. The 800 metre double Olympic champion is disappointed in the results, but refuses to let it stop her from fighting.
“I am very disappointed by this ruling, but refuse to let World Athletics drug me or stop me from being who I am,” she said in a statement. “Excluding female athletes or endangering our health solely because of our natural abilities puts World Athletics on the wrong side of history. I will continue to fight for the human rights of female athletes, both on the track and off the track, until we can all run free the way we were born.”
Picture: Instagram / Caster Semenya