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2014-11-05 09:39:00 IOC





Almost one year after IOC President Thomas Bach delivered a speech to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) calling for “sport to enjoy responsible autonomy” and that “politics must respect this sporting autonomy”, the 69th regular session of the UNGA in New York has adopted a historic resolution by consensus, recognising the autonomy of the IOC and sport. The document states that the General Assembly “supports the independence and autonomy of sport as well as the mission of the IOC in leading the Olympic Movement”. “We highly welcome this resolution as a historic milestone in the relations between sport and politics,” President Bach said. “We must form partnerships with political organisations based on this recognition of the autonomy of sport. The excellent relations between the UN and the IOC can in this respect serve as an example for relations on the national level between National Olympic Committees and national governments. This relationship with governments requires that sport always remains politically neutral.” The IOC, enjoying UN Observer Status since in 2009, was represented by IOC member and Permanent Observer of the IOC to the United Nations Mario Pescante.

The IOC has awarded to CBC/Radio-Canada the exclusive broadcast rights in Canada for the XXIII Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang in 2018 and the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo in 2020. President Bach said: “We are pleased that we will continue to work with the team at CBC/Radio-Canada who have demonstrated their support for the Olympic values over many years. In addition, the financial support that CBC/Radio-Canada has committed as part of this agreement will be redistributed by the IOC to support sport in Canada and around the world, as well as supporting future organisers of the Olympic Games.”

The IOC President welcomed the sports representatives of the members of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) at the 15th EUROVISION Sports Assembly, held at the Olympic Museum. He was accompanied by IOC Executive Board member Juan Antonio Samaranch, who is leading the negotiations with the European broadcasters. President Bach informed the EBU members and rights holders of the Olympic Games about Olympic Agenda 2020, including the possible Olympic TV Channel project.

President Bach met the Secretary General of the Qatari NOC, Saoud Bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani. The two men discussed cooperation between their respective institutions and the work of the Qatari Olympic Academy, with which cooperation projects could be set up, in particular concerning the training of young leaders and NOC exchanges.

A meeting has also been held with the Special Advisor to the United Nations Secretary-General on Sport for Development and Peace, Wilfrid Lemke, Their discussions focused on the collaboration between the two organisations and their various joint projects.

During a meeting with the President of the International Luge Federation, Josef Fendt, the two men discussed a range of topics including the preparations for the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018.

President Bach and Gordon Tang at the Olympic Museum. ©IOC / Christophe Moratal

A new stone has been unveiled on the Olympic Museum’s Donors’ Wall. The stone bears the name of Gordon Tang, businessman and President of the Singapore Windsurfing Association. The ceremony was attended by IOC President and Singaporean IOC member Ser Miang Ng. “Without the generosity of donors like Mr Tang, the Olympic Museum would not be what it is today.” said the IOC President.


Jacques Rogge with children from the Azraq camp. ©IOC / Richard Juilliart

Jacques Rogge has completed his first mission as Special Envoy of the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General for Youth Refugees and Sport. He visited Syrian refugees currently living in the UN camp of Azraq, located in the desert 100km east of the Jordanian capital, Amman. He was accompanied by Prince Feisal Al Hussein, IOC member in Jordan and NOC President. The camp currently hosts 5,000 shelters housing some 18,000 refugees. During his visit, Jacques Rogge spent time with refugee families and young people. He also visited the site that will soon host a multi-sport pitch financed by the IOC. In addition to providing the facility, the IOC, together with local partners, will offer a full programme for children to play sports in addition to taking part in the recreational programme already under way in the camp. Girls will also be encouraged to join in. The sports programme should be operational in the course of 2015 and aims to benefit over 2,000 young refugees per year. “I am really honoured to have been appointed to this role and grateful to the UN Secretary-General for the trust he put in me. This first mission has been particularly moving and inspiring,” said Jacques Rogge. “Refugee populations are largely composed of young people and children and having talked to families today there is no doubt that leisure and physical activities can have a positive impact on their lives in disarray.”


Karin Sierralta, Fernando Aguerre, Barbara Kendall 
and Casper Steinfath. ©ISA/Michael Tweddle

Barbara Kendall was elected Vice-President of the International Surfing Association (ISA) at the IF’s annual general meeting in Punta Rocas (Peru) which has also re-elected Fernando Aguerre as ISA President. Barbara Kendall and Casper Steinfath, also newly elected, join the other two Vice-Presidents, Karin Sierralta and Layne Beachley, on the ISA Executive Committee.


The IOC was saddened to learn of the death of IOC honorary member Sir Tennant Edward (Tay) Wilson, aged 89. He joined the IOC in 1988 and served on the New Sources of Financing Commission and Finance Commission. He became an IOC honorary member in 2006. During his long career in the Olympic Movement, he held numerous positions, including those of Secretary General of the New Zealand Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association, member of the Association of National Olympic Committees Executive Commission, Chairman of the Oceania National Olympic Committees Finance Commission and Secretary General of the Oceania National Olympic Committees. He was also President of the New Zealand Pierre de Coubertin Committee.


The International Boxing Association (AIBA) officially launched its new AIBA Pro Boxing competition (APB) with a pre-ranking phase held in Novosibirsk (Russian Federation) on 24 October. AIBA President and IOC Executive Board member Ching-Kuo Wu said: “The launch of APB represents one more step in AIBA’s long-term plan to improve its care and support for boxers throughout their careers”. The Rio Games in 2016 will see professional boxers competing in the Olympic Games for the very first time.

The 80th Congress of the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) was held in Tashkent (Uzbekistan) on 29 and 30 October. Around 250 delegates from 78 national federations attended. The numerous decisions taken included the definitive admission of the following ten new federations as affiliated or associated members: Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Central African Republic, Cayman Islands, Mauritius, Nicaragua, Sudan, Uganda, Zambia and Kosovo. The federation of Botswana was excluded. The city of Tokyo (Japan) has been chosen to host the 81st Congress in 2016.

The International Rugby Board (IRB) has announced that Welsh rugby coach and administrator Ray Williams is the winner of the 2014 Vernon Pugh Award for Distinguished Service. In 1967, Williams became the first full-time Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) coaching organiser, demonstrating an innovative and scientific approach to rugby coaching. He served as WRU secretary from 1980 to 1988 and represented the WRU on the IRB Council between 1993 and 1997. He was also Tournament Director of the 1991 Rugby World Cup.

The International Triathlon Union (ITU) has announced the dates of the test events ahead of the Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games. The qualification events will be held on 1 and 2 August 2015.

The World Curling Federation (WCF) has formally accepted the Hong Kong Curling Association and the Qatar Curling Federation as conditional member associations. This follows a statutory period of consultation with the WCF members since the annual World Curling Congress held in Reno (USA) in September 2014.

At its Council meeting in Ibiza (Spain) on 25 October, the International Power Boating Union (UIM) appointed Thomas Kurth as its new Secretary General. Kurth joined UIM as Special Commissioner after the departure of the previous Secretary General in July 2014 and has since been in charge of staff and operations at the UIM headquarters in Monaco. He was also head of competitions at the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) for ten years.


Austrian NOC staff reach the summit of Mount Olympus. ©Austrian NOC

Karl Stoss, President of the Austrian NOC, and Secretary General Peter Mennel are experienced climbers. They therefore decided to take the NOC staff to the top of the highest and best known mountain in Greece, Mount Olympus. The highest summit, Mytikas, at 2,918m, was their final destination. Of the 14 NOC staff members, 12 participated in this excursion, accompanied by three guides. When they reached the top, they took out the Austrian and Olympic flags for a souvenir photo.

The NOC of Bahrain recently held a meeting with representatives of all the national sports associations in the city of Riffa. The main purpose of the meeting was to update the associations on their amended statutes and the related consolidated financial bylaw.

The President of the Republic of Burundi laying the first 
stone at the NOC headquarters. ©NOC of Burundi

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