Oscar Pistorius will now be allowed to leave South Africa to compete (Reuters)
Oscar Pistorius will now be allowed to leave South Africa to compete (Reuters)

Olympic and Paralympic runner Oscar Pistorius has been granted permission to leave the country while on bail so he can take part in competitions.

Pistorius, who is charged with the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, had applied to have his bail conditions relaxed, with his lawyers saying the 26-year-old is not a flight risk.

His lawyers also argued against the ruling which meant Pistorius was not allowed to return to his home where he shot Steenkamp on 14 February.

As part of his new bail conditions, Pistorius must tell authorities where he plans to travel a week before he intends to leave and return his passport within 24 hours of returning to South Africa.

Pistorius' lawyer, Barry Roux, said his client has no immediate plans to compete but added "this might and this will change".

Roux claimed the runner might return to the track in order to earn money.

Pistorius, also known as the Blade Runner, was not in court for the hearing.

The original bail conditions were set on 22 February. They included travel restrictions, avoid his Pretoria home, report to a police station twice a week, abstain from alcohol and avoid contact with any witnesses in the case.

Pistorious is accused of the premeditated murder of Steenkamp. The 26-year-old denies the charge, saying he thought she was an intruder and had acted out of fear when he shot her.

In a separate case the previous day Pistorius' brother, Carl, appeared in court charged with culpable homicide of a woman who died in a road collision in 2008. The 28-year-old pleaded not guilty to the charges.