Paraskevi Papahristou was set to compete in the women's triple jump in the 2012 Summer Olympics, an event scheduled for Aug. 3. Note the past tense, because the 23-year-old Papahristou has been sent home by Greece after she sent a racist tweet earlier this week.
Here's the tweet in question (with the help of Google Translate):
With so many Africans in Greece .. At least the mosquitoes of West Nile .. will eat homemade food!!!!
The London Games have already been billed as the "Social Media Games," the first Olympiad with a strong presence and influence from Twitter and Facebook and Google+ (haha just kidding on that last one), and apparently that trailblazing brings with it both positive and (very) negative effects. This is first time an athlete has been expelled for the Olympics for something said on social media.
The official statement from the Hellenic Olympic Committee, released Wednesday, is that Papahristou is "placed outside the Olympic team for statements contrary to the values and ideas of the Olympic movement."
Papahristou was back on social media shortly after the announcement, this time to apologize:
I would like to express my heartfelt apologies for the unfortunate and tasteless joke I published on my personal Twitter account. I am very sorry and ashamed for the negative responses I triggered, since I never wanted to offend anyone, or to encroach human rights.
She finished 11th at the European championships this year and was not expected to compete for a medal in London.