By Emily Goddard

Gay rights campaigners have said they will target Olympics sponsors at Sochi 2014 ©Getty ImagesDecember 2 - Gay rights campaigners have said they will recruit athletes set to compete at Sochi 2014 and target Olympics sponsors as they continue to campaign against next year's Winter Games in light of Russia's law banning homosexual "propaganda".

Athlete Ally says it will target the International Olympic Committee (IOC) worldwide partners, including Coca-Cola, Panasonic, McDonald's and Dow, for continuing to support Sochi 2014 despite the controversial anti-gay bill, signed by Russia's President Vladimir Putin in June.

Coca-Cola, which was targeted in October by gay rights group All Out when it hired trucks to circle the company's Atlanta headquarters with billboards urging it to call on Russia to revoke the law, has already insisted that it will not withdraw its sponsorship to "avoid undermining gay athletes who've spent years preparing for the competition".

"A more positive impact can be made through continued involvement, rather than by sitting on the sidelines," a spokesperson for the firm, Anne Moore, told Bloomberg.

Omega, meanwhile, said it would be "inappropriate for us to take any position that could have even the appearance of partisanship".

IOC Marketing Commission chairman Gerhard Heiberg spoke in September of how he was being "pushed" by several sponsors over concerns of protests during the Olympics and warned of the potential negative impact.

"I think this could ruin a lot for all of us," he said at the IOC Session in Buenos Aires.

"We have to be prepared."

Athlete Ally claims it is in talks with a number of athletes, including Mike Janyk, about wearing "Principle 6" clothing during Sochi 2014 ©Getty ImagesAthlete Ally claims it is in talks with a number of athletes, including Mike Janyk, about wearing "Principle 6" clothing during Sochi 2014 ©Getty Images

Athlete Ally also claims it is in talks with a number of athletes, including Australian snowboarder Belle Brockhoff and Canadian alpine skier Mike Janyk, about wearing "Principle 6" - the element of the Olympic Charter that bans all forms of discrimination - clothing at the Games to show their disdain for the legislation.

Brockhoff, who earlier this year revealed she is a lesbian, said she wants to "compete as myself so that people see I am me", but admitted she is seeking legal advice before committing to wearing the Principle 6 clothing.

"There is a tremendous opportunity because the world is going to be watching [at Sochi 2014]," Athlete Ally founder and executive director Hudson Taylor said, before adding that the sponsors will have "no choice" but to respond.

Russia's Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko admitted last month that it might have been better to introduce the contentious anti-gay propaganda law after Sochi 2014

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

Related stories
November 2013: Historic meeting with IOC President "of crucial importance for truly inclusive sport", says Gay Games official
November 2013: Russia should have waited until after Sochi 2014 to introduce anti-gay law, admits Sports Minister
October 2013: Pride House International turns to National Olympic Committees for support during Sochi 2014
October 2013: Everyone welcome at Sochi 2014 regardless of "ethnicity, race or sexual orientation" Putin promises Bach
September 2013: Cher refuses to perform at Sochi 2014 as stars backlash over Russian anti-gay law