Two-time Olympic champion Caster Semenya on Thursday filed a lawsuit in the European Court of Human Rights challenging restrictions of testosterone in female athletes, her lawyers said.
In 2018, the world athletics governing body banned Semenya and other female athletes with differences of sexual development (DSD) from involving in races between 400 metres and a mile unless they take hormone-suppressing drugs.
The 30-year-old Semenya, challenged those rule at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) and the Swiss Federal Supreme Court but was unsuccessful.
She made another fresh attempt on February 19, filing the case at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.
Her lawyer, Norton Rose Fulbright, announced in a statement,
“Semenya’s ongoing fight for dignity, equality, and the human rights of women in sport took a crucial step forward with the filing of an application” to the ECHR. According to the lawyers, she is appealing to the court to find Switzerland to have
“Failed in its positive obligations to protect her against the violation of her rights under the European Convention on Human Rights”.
In the Swiss court judgment last year, it concluded that the CAS’ decision “cannot be challenged”.
But Semenya hopes her latest appeal will see the European court “put an end to the long standing human rights violations by World Athletics against women athletes”, reports the Guardian.
She is quoted as saying in the statement that,
“All we ask is to be allowed to run free, for once and for all, as the strong and fearless women we are and have always been”.
However, no dates have been set yet for the hearing of the case.
In the meantime, the South African athlete hasn’t qualified for the Tokyo Olympics yet.
She had already decided to compete in the 200m event even before the Olympic Games was postponed to 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic.