Belarusian sprinter heads for Austria

Belarusian sprinter Krystsina Tsimanouskaya left Tokyo for Austria on Wednesday, adding another dramatic twist in a diplomatic drama.

Tsimanouskaya was seen arriving with a police escort, before boarding an Austrian Airlines plane to Vienna.

Previously, she had been scheduled to board a flight to Warsaw, where the government has offered her a humanitarian visa.

A member of the Belarusian community in touch with Tsimanouskaya said diplomats had changed her flight due to security concerns.

She had been set to compete in the women's 200 meter heats on Monday but her country's head coach turned up at her room on Sunday and told her to leave.

Tsimanouskaya refused to board a flight home- and sought refuge at the polish embassy.

The International Olympic Committee said on Tuesday it had launched a formal investigation into the case and was expecting a report from the Belarusian team.

The incident has put renewed attention on the political discord in Belarus, a former Soviet state that is run by President Alexander Lukashenko.

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