IOC Vice President John Coates clarifies the Tokyo Olympics demand for Annastacia Palaszczuk

IOC Vice-President John Coates has retaliated against allegations that he “abuse” when he ordered Queensland Prime Minister Annastacia Palaszczuk to attend the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics.

Coates has insisted he is not “anti-women” after Ms Palaszczuk’s awkward demand at a press conference last Wednesday.

The Premier of Queensland had stated she would not attend the opening ceremony as she faced mounting criticism over her trip to Japan as her state continues to enforce hard border closures for international arrivals.

Mr Coates claimed that Ms Palaszczuk approached him before the press conference and asked him to help her find a way to take the pressure off the public to miss the event.

The IOC vice president (pictured, John Coates) has hit back on accusations that he was “mansplaining” when he ordered Queensland Prime Minister Annastacia Palaszczuk to attend the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics.

John Coates has insisted he is not

John Coates has insisted he is not “anti-women” after the awkward demand made against Ms Palaszczuk at a press conference last Wednesday

‘She said to me: ‘Give me a hand, John, will you?’, he said the Australian.

‘So I did. She’s my very good friend. I may have been too rough. But I thought if I was rude, I’d stand up for her.’

During Wednesday’s press conference, Mr. Coates turned to Ms. Palaszczuk to order her to attend the ceremony.

“You’re going to the opening ceremony,” he said. “There will be an opening and a closing ceremonies in 2032 and all of you, everyone there, need to understand the traditional parts of that.

“None of you stay home and sit in your room.”

Mr. Coates is one of the most influential figures in international sport and is widely described as the second most powerful figurehead in the International Olympic Committee, after President Thomas Bach.

The Sydney-born administrator and businessman was twice Vice President of the International Olympic Committee and was awarded a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2006.

Ms Palaszczuk watched in awkward silence as the power broker told her she had “never been to an opening ceremony” and “didn’t know the protocols.”

During Wednesday's press conference, Mr. Coates turned to Ms. Palaszczuk to order her to attend the ceremony.

During Wednesday’s press conference, Mr. Coates turned to Ms. Palaszczuk to order her to attend the ceremony.

JOHN COATES’ FULL STATEMENT ON HIS EXCHANGE WITH THE QUEENSLAND PREMIER

My comments about the Prime Minister and the opening ceremony have been completely misinterpreted by people who were not in the room.

Absolutely, I believe the Prime Minister should come to the opening ceremony and she has accepted that.

I’m excited about that. Attending the opening ceremony has always been her choice.

I have always believed that all three levels of government should come to the opening ceremony.

The Prime Minister and I have a longstanding and very successful relationship. We both know the spirit of my comments and I have no indication that she was offended in any way.

If in doubt, ask her.

“You don’t know the protocols and I think it’s a really important lesson for everyone here — opening ceremonies cost on the order of $75 million to $100 million,” Mr Coates said.

“My very strong recommendation is the Prime Minister and the Mayor and the Minister, be there and understand.”

His comment sparked a public reaction, with media personalities criticizing the vice president of the IOC.

Nine News journalist Leila McKinnon praised Ms. Palaszczuk for showing “restraint” while being “talked to on the world stage as if she were a recalcitrant teenager.”

“My blood would boil,” she wrote on Twitter.

Ms Palaszczuk reportedly texted Mr Coates apologizing for the resistance.

Ms Palaszczuk has reportedly texted Mr Coates to apologize for the backlash after Wednesday's press conference

Ms Palaszczuk has reportedly texted Mr Coates to apologize for the backlash after Wednesday’s press conference

“I’m sorry there was negative media about this,” the text read. “They always look for a problem when there isn’t one.”

On Thursday, the prime minister appeared to suggest she would follow Mr Coates’ instructions and attend the ceremony.

‘I’m not going to offend anyone. John Coates laid down the law last night,” she told ABC Brisbane.

“I’m not going to insult the IOC, I’m not going to insult the Japanese government, so I’ll let them figure that out.

“If we didn’t have John Coates, this… [the successful bid] wouldn’t have happened,” she said in a separate interview with ABC News.

“John has been the driving force behind us to secure the Olympics. His networks are nothing short of phenomenal.’

On Thursday, the Prime Minister appeared to suggest she would follow Mr Coates' instructions and attend the ceremony (pictured, Olympic cauldron being lit during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony at the Olympic Stadium)

On Thursday, the Prime Minister appeared to suggest she would follow Mr Coates’ instructions and attend the ceremony (pictured, Olympic cauldron being lit during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony at the Olympic Stadium)

Mr Coates later claimed that his comments to Ms Palaszczuk had been “completely misinterpreted”.

“My comments about the Prime Minister and the opening ceremony have been completely misinterpreted by people who were not in the room,” he said.

“Absolutely, I think the Prime Minister should come to the opening ceremony and she has accepted that.

“We both know the thrust of my comments and I have no indication that she was offended in any way.”

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