Lebanon's Jacky Chamoun speeds down the course during the first run of the Women's slalom, at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Whistler, British Columbia, Friday, Feb. 26, 2010. (AP Photo/Charlie Krupa)
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Lebanese Alpine skier Jackie Chamoun responded Tuesday to criticism from local media after images of her posing topless for an Austrian sports calendar went viral.Chamoun, 22, is one of two athletes who are representing Lebanon at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Chamoun said the photos were taken three years ago, and the images in the final calendar were objectively less explicit than the behind-the-scenes footage in which Chamoun and Njeim's chests are fully exposed.In Sochi, Chamoun will compete in the women's slalom ski competition on Feb. 21 and women's giant slalom on Feb. 18 . In her message Tuesday, Chamoun implored Lebanese to stop spreading the images so that she could focus on the races. Chamoun's response received an outpouring of support from Lebanese – nearly 900 comments by Tuesday afternoon – wishing her luck and telling the athlete not to apologize.The government, however, took a harder line against Chamoun.The Lebanese Olympic Committee responded to Karami's request Tuesday by strongly condemning Chamoun's photo shoot but decided not to pull the Olympian from the 2014 Winter Games.
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