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05 Mar 2014
IOC News

Highlights of the week



On Sunday 23 February, IOC President Thomas Bach closed the XXII Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, “There is no higher compliment than to say on behalf of all participants and on behalf of all of my fellow Olympic Athletes: These were the Athletes’ Games” said President Bach in his speech.  Addressing the athletes, he thanked them: “You have excelled in your competitions. You have shared your emotions with us and the whole world. You have celebrated victory with dignity and accepted defeat with dignity. By living together under one roof in the Olympic Village you send a powerful message from Sochi to the world: the message of a society of peace, tolerance and respect. I appeal to everybody implicated in confrontation, oppression or violence: Act on this Olympic message of dialogue and peace.”

The following day, President Bach (right of photo) invited the organisers of the 2014 Winter Games to a thank-you breakfast, in the presence of Russian President Vladimir Putin (left of photo). On this occasion, he awarded a number of the main organisers with the Olympic Order and presented the Olympic Cup to the people of Sochi.


President Bach with the Olympic Order recipients

After a laudatory speech by the Chairman of the Coordination Commission for these Winter Games, Jean-Claude Killy, the Olympic Order in gold was presented to Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak and the Sochi 2014 President and CEO, Dmitry Chernyshenko, for their tireless work in support of this edition of the Games. 

President Bach then presented the Olympic Cup to Sochi Mayor Anatoliy Pakhomov for the people of Sochi, who for the last seven years lived through the extensive transformation of their city, and to whom the IOC is very grateful for their patience and determination. The people of Sochi ensured successful Games, and are sure to enjoy a fantastic Olympic legacy, in terms of tourism in particular, as well as other Games-related areas.

Lastly, seven Sochi 2014 Executive Vice-Presidents received the Olympic Order for their contribution to the project. A number of Olympic pins were also distributed to the Organising Committee’s senior staff and to five representatives of the volunteers, who helped ensure that the athletes were able to take centre stage to enjoy 17 days of thrilling high-level competition and thus make these Games so special, and whose wonderful engagement will create the legacy of a strong civil society in Russia.


Jacques Rogge receiving his decoration from the Princess Royal

Jacques Rogge has been made an Honorary Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of St Michael and St George, one of the UK’s highest distinctions for someone from another country, in recognition of his exceptional career within the Olympic Movement and in particular his contribution to the 2012 Games in London. The IOC Honorary President was presented with this distinction by IOC member the Princess Royal, during a ceremony at Buckingham Palace attended also by IOC President Thomas Bach; IOC members in Great Britain Craig Reedie, Philip Craven and Adam Pengilly; and British Olympic Association Chairman Sebastian Coe.



At its recent meeting in Lausanne, the Executive Committee of the International Fencing Federation (FIE) confirmed the dates for the 2014 World Championships in Kazan, Russia, which will take place from 15 to 23 July. The FIE also announced the dates and places for the newly created FIE Fencing Grand Prix Series (FGP Series). This comprises nine top-level events in nine cities around the globe, spread from November 2014 to June 2015, featuring the world’s best fencers. Details on

The International Wrestling Federation (FILA) has announced the death on 14 February of Bulgarian wrestler Enui Valchev at the age of 78. A bronze medallist at the 1960 Games in Rome, he won gold at the 1964 Games in Tokyo, then silver at the 1968 Games in Mexico City. After being crowned world champion in 1962, he was European champion in 1968 and 1969. Enui Valchev was inducted into the FILA Hall of Fame in 2005. Details on

On 27 and 28 February, Cancun (Mexico) is hosting the International Swimming Federation (FINA) World Water Polo Conference. Under the motto “Sharing the Magic of Team Sports”, the Conference has brought together water polo leaders and experts, to exchange experiences, to get new inspiration and to shape the future of this discipline.

FINA has also informed us that the first Swimming Officials School of 2014 was organised in Riga, Latvia, from 8 to 9 February. In all, there were 82 participants, 55 from Riga and 27 from Estonia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Israel. Details on

The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) has just launched the bidding procedure for the 2016 World Junior Table Tennis Championships. All applications must be submitted with the support of the respective National Table Tennis Association by 20 March 2014. These World Championships were first organised in 2003, in Santiago (Chile). Details on

The International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) Secretary General Franz Schreiber and Vice-President and Italian Shotgun Shooting Federation (FITAV) President Luciano Rossi, in a joint ISSF/FITAV delegation, met representatives of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) in Bonn (Germany) on 18 February, to discuss the possibility for para-clay target to become an IPC Shooting recognised discipline. The meeting led to the agreement that there will be a para-clay target exhibition event on 22 July as part of the 2014 IPC Shooting World Championships, taking place from 17 to 26 July in Suhl (Germany). Details on

The International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) has confirmed that the Italian city of Milan will host its 2014 World Congress, from 31 October to 1 November. This 34th FIVB Congress will be preceded by a one-day workshop for all national federations provide participants with the opportunity to discuss issues with the FIVB and confederation officials, while also providing a platform for the FIVB to update federations on key developments within the organisation. Details on


The World Curling Federation (WCF) has announced that the World Men’s Curling Championship in 2016 will be hosted by the city of Basle (Switzerland) between 2 and 10 April in the St Jakobshalle. The city previously hosted these Championships in 2012. Details on



The Bahrain NOC course participants

A course in strategic planning in the field of sport was organised by the Sports Training and Development Section of the Bahrain NOC this week. Twenty-five sports officials, representing the Public Security Sports Federation at the Ministry of Interior, in addition to a number of participants from Kuwait, attended the course, which addressed various topic related to the basics of the strategic thinking and strategic analysis of the internal and external environment of sports organisations.

Presentation of the national flag by the Colombian President

On 26 February, the Colombian President, Juan Manuel Santos, presented the national flag to the Colombian team who will be taking part in the 10th South American Games in Santiago (Chile) from 7 to 9 March. The flag was presented to 2012 Olympic bronze medallist and 2013 World Champion judoka Yuri Alvear, on behalf of the 395 athletes who will be representing Colombia. The ceremony was held in the Nariño Palace, the President’s official residence, in the presence of Colombian NOC President Baltazar Medina. Details on

Spanish NOC President Alejandro Blanco (left of photo) and the Director of the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation of the Valencian Community, Elena Tejedor (right of photo), have signed a cooperation agreement to facilitate the preparation of elite athletes from the region, with a view to including them in the Spanish Olympic teams. To promote sport and athletes in the region of Valencia, the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation will be supporting the FER (Foment d´Esportistes amb Reptes) project, which helps athletes with private funding. For its part, the NOC will contribute its knowledge and take part in promotional campaigns. An NOC member will also sit on the Technical Commission of the FER project. Details on

On 27 February, the Hungarian NOC announced the death of the legendary two-time Olympic champion footballer,   Dezso Novak (pictured left), at the age of 75. An international player between 1959 and 1968, Novak won gold medals at the 1964 Games in Tokyo and the 1968 Games in Mexico City, after a bronze medal in Rome, in 1960. Novak was also the top scorer in the European Championships in 1964. Details on


Meeting of the Palestinian NOC Executive Board

At the second central meeting of the Palestinian NOC’s Executive Board, NOC President Jibril Al-Rjoub stressed the importance of activating the role of the NOC at all internal and external levels. As well as discussing the technical and administrative affairs of the national sports federations, the Board also reaffirmed the need for serious preparations to join the continental and regional championships.

Presentation of the IOC Trophy to Koffi Agbényéga Voule-Frititi (4th from right) 

The celebrations to mark the 50th anniversary of the Togolese NOC was also the occasion for its Executive Committee to present the 2013 IOC Trophy, “150 Years of Pierre de Coubertin, sport as a school of life”, to former Sports Minister Koffi Agbényéga Voule-Frititi, in recognition of his important contribution to the development of sport in the country. The ceremony was attended by members of the Togolese government, including the Minister for Sport and Leisure, Angèle Amouzou-Djake; sports leaders, including the NOC President, Yawovi Yawovi Yao Goe-Ho DOGBO Yawovi Yao Goe-Ho DOGBOYao Goe-Ho Dogbo; and a number of athletes. The Trophy was presented to the former Sports Minister by former NOC President Zoumaro Gnofame.

On 25 February, the auditorium of the Venezuelan NOC headquarters was the setting for a ceremony to present the title of “Sports Personality” to 10 leading figures from national sport, in recognition of their work and commitment as role models for young people, both on and off the field of play. On the same occasion, the 169 athletes who will be taking part in the 10th South American Games in Santiago were presented with their equipment by Sports Minister Antonio Álvarez.

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