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Olympic Highlights 07/02/2020

IOC / Christophe Moratal
07 Feb 2020
Olympic News, IOC News, Olympic Highlights



IOC President Thomas Bach met Iraqi NOC President Raad Hammoodi Al-Dulaimi and parliamentarians including the Chair of the Youth and Sport Committee of the Iraqi Parliament, Abbas Oleiwi Kadhim. They discussed various topics linked to the situation of sport in Iraq, the new sports law in Iraq and preparations for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.

IOC / Christophe Moratal
President Bach welcomed the leadership of the German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB), together with National Sports Federations Speaker Ingo Weiss, and the Presidents and Secretaries General of National Sports Federations in Germany, to Olympic House. They held their regular working meeting in Lausanne, and one of the main topics discussed was the preparations for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.  Beforehand, a meeting was held with DOSB President Alfons Hörmann, along with Secretary General Veronika Rücker.

The President also met IOC Executive Board member and President of United World Wrestling (UWW) Nenad Lalovic. They mainly spoke about the follow-up of the work of the Special Monitoring Committee in charge of the boxing preparations for Tokyo 2020, which is chaired by Lalovic. 

IOC / Christophe Moratal
President Bach met French Olympic historian Jean Durry, founder of the National Sports Museum and author of several books on Pierre de Coubertin.

IOC / Christophe Moratal

IOC Member Richard L. Carrión has been appointed Chairman of the Joint Management Committee for the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023, which will take place in Indonesia, Japan and the Philippines. He was appointed during a meeting of the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Executive Committee, of which he is a member. He has also been a FIBA Central Board member since 2010. (See IF section below.)


Copyright 2020, Messe München GmbH
At ISPO Munich 2020, the largest trade fair for sports business, Tegla Loroupe received the 50th ISPO Cup for outstanding personalities in the world of sport. The Cup was presented by ISPO CEO Klaus Dittrich in front of 500 guests from the sports industry. Loroupe was appointed by the IOC President as Chef de Mission of the Refugee Olympic Team, created by the IOC for the Olympic Games Rio 2016 and for Tokyo 2020. A three-time Olympian, she is one of the greatest long-distance runners in history, and was the first African woman to win the New York Marathon in 1994. Through her Tegla Loroupe Peace Foundation, she works actively at the Kakuma refugee camp in her country, and was behind the construction of schools for orphans in several African countries. In 2011, she was awarded the IOC Women and Sport World Trophy, setting a remarkable example of how sport can really change people’s lives. More info here.

international sportS FEDERATIONS


The International Basketball Federation’s Executive Committee met at the Patrick Baumann House of Basketball, FIBA’s headquarters, on 31 January. The meeting began with one minute of silence to pay homage to two basketball greats: NBA Commissioner Emeritus David Stern and five-time NBA champion, two-time Olympic gold medallist and FIBA Basketball World Cup Ambassador Kobe Bryant, who both died recently. The agenda featured the next women’s and men’s Olympic qualifying tournaments. The decisions taken included awarding three FIBA Youth World Cups to the Hungarian Basketball Federation: the U19 Women’s Basketball World Cup 2021, the U17 Women’s Basketball World Cup 2021 and the U19 Basketball World Cup 2023, which will all be held in the city of Debrecen. More details here.

The Chief of Global Football Development at the International Association Football Federation (FIFA), Arsène Wenger, has announced the launch of a groundbreaking talent-development programme that will enable member associations to optimise their technical structures, establish sustainable and long-term scouting schemes and, ultimately, reduce the gap at the top of the game.  Through the programme, all 211 member associations will be able to benefit this year from an assessment of the various areas of their high-performance ecosystem in both men’s and women’s football, including all national teams, domestic leagues, scouting projects and academies. Full details here.

At its recent meeting at Olympic House, held in the presence of the IOC President, the International Modern Pentathlon Union (UIPM) Executive Board approved new formats for modern pentathlon and tetrathlon at the Olympic Games Paris 2024 and the Youth Olympic Games Dakar 2022. The Board also took decisions on member applications and future competitions. Full info here.

The International Triathlon Union (ITU), in cooperation with the University of Canberra and Loughborough University, has produced “Beat the Heat“, a guide to help triathletes and paratriathletes prepare to compete in hot and humid conditions, the likely scenario that the athletes will face at the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020. The guide provides recommendations to optimise performances and minimise the occurrence of heat illness. More info here.


Meeting in Rome (Italy) on 1 February, the World Underwater Federation (CMAS) Board of Directors elected a new Secretary General in the person of Kevin O'Shaughnessy. He replaces Hassan Baccouche, who stepped down but still remains a member of the Board. Info at


Albanian NOC

The Albanian NOC welcomed its 8th volunteer from the Francophone Sports Volunteering programme, Katia Boy (3rd right in photo). Since 2011, the Francophone Association of National Olympic Committees (AFCNO), of which the Albanian NOC is a member, has allowed several young people aged 18 to 30 to take on a volunteering mission within an NOC, federation or sports union in France or abroad. The aim is to promote sports activity for everyone and its structure internationally thanks to the Olympic Movement values. This cooperation allows the NOC team to once again help a volunteer to succeed in her projects for one year. Info at

Rafael Bello / COB
With the Time Brasil Training Centre, the Brazilian Olympic Committee (COB) is providing a state-of-the-art facility for athletes preparing for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. In January this year, the Centre, which has been managed since 2008 by the COB, received 291 athletes from 23 sports. In addition, 131 evaluations were carried out with 72 athletes at the Olympic Laboratory, an increase of 43 per cent over the same period in 2019. Located in the Olympic Park of Barra, the Training Centre saw a total of 1,033 athletes take advantage of its facilities in 2019. In addition to the Centre, and in cooperation with the confederations, the COB has supported numerous initiatives for the athletes, such as international training camps, support and logistics for participation in competitions, hiring and maintaining high-level coaches, and acquisition of sports equipment, among other things. Full details here.

Hellenic NOC
The Hellenic Olympic Committee (HOC) has unanimously decided that Olympic shooting champion Anna Korakaki (l. on photo) will be the first torchbearer at the lighting ceremony of the Olympic flame for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on 12 March 2020 in Ancient Olympia. The HOC Plenary Session approved the proposal of the HOC’s Olympic Torch Relay Commission and, for the first time in history, a woman will carry the Olympic flame first. Korakaki won a gold medal in the 25m pistol and a bronze in the 10m air pistol at the Olympic Games Rio 2016, and has become a world and European champion. She was also named an Athlete Role Model for the Youth Olympic Games Buenos Aires 2018. During the same Session, it was decided that the final torchbearer, who will carry the Olympic flame at the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens on 19 March, will be pole vaulter Katerina Stefanidi (r. on photo), who won a gold medal at the Olympic Games Rio 2016 and two consecutive world titles. More info at

Kipras Štreimikis

On 27 January, the Lithuanian NOC launched an international training course on “Values education through sport: applying the OVEP [Olympic Values Education Programme] 2.0 methodology”. The course brought together 28 participants from Lithuania, Germany, Estonia, Israel, North Macedonia, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Besides sharing experiences, the participants sought to understand aspects of the contemporary world in which young people are living, and the challenges they face. The course is partly funded by the European Union’s Erasmus+ programme, which supports education, training, youth and sport in Europe. More info at In addition, on 29 January, during the final event of the "Towards gender balance with media” project organised by the Lithuanian NOC, the situation of gender equality in Lithuania was discussed. The event was attended by representatives of sports federations, journalists, public relations specialists, athletes and members of the Lithuanian Olympic team (LTeam). The first event of the project took place in April 2019, in Druskininkai. The Lithuanian NOC developed the Recommendations for Lithuanian Media on Sports Topics and Athlete Portrayal based on national cases and the IOC’s Olympic Agenda 2020 and 2018 Gender Portrayal Guidelines, in collaboration with the Lithuanian Sports Journalists’ Federation. More info at

Czech Olympic Committee
Two-time Wimbledon champion, six-time Fed Cup winner and bronze medallist at the Olympic Games Rio 2016, Petra Kvitová (see photo), has received the Věra Čáslavská Award. Presented by the Czech Olympic Committee, the award was established with the aim of highlighting the activities and contribution of women in sport and the Olympic Movement.  The trophy was presented to the tennis player at the Czech NOC headquarters by its President, IOC Member Jiří Kejval, and the Chair of the Commission for Equal Opportunities in Sport, Naďa Knorre. Full details here.

NOC of São Tomé and Príncipe

The President of the NOC of São Tomé and Príncipe, João Manuel Da Costa Alegre Afonso (photo), has been appointed as Special Adviser to the Prime Minister for sport. This appointment takes into account his career and experience in sport in the country and the collaborative partnership between the government and the NOC. Info at

Venezuelan NOC

As part of its preparations for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, the Venezuelan NOC is organising a week of meetings with the sports federations, the Ministry of Sport and the Chef de Mission for these Games. The aim is to better understand each federation and give them the chance to raise any potential problems requiring the support of the relevant entities. More info here.


Tokyo 2020

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The Ariake Arena, the Tokyo 2020 volleyball venue, was officially inaugurated in a ceremony combining sport, culture and entertainment. The spectators got a glimpse of what Tokyo 2020 will be like. The building comprises a main arena and a sub arena, and will have a seating capacity of 15,000 at Games time. After the Games, it will become a new entertainment, sport and culture hub for the city of Tokyo. More details here.
Paris 2024

On 3 February, the Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games Paris 2024 launched the 4th Olympic and Paralympic Week (SOP) in schools across France to get young people moving. Every year, this Week, created during the candidature phase, focuses on promoting sports practice and the values of sport in all schools and higher education institutions throughout France. From 3 to 8 February 2020, the 4th SOP will bring together 2,500 institutions and 400,000 students around 1,400 educational and sports projects across the country. Some 200 athletes will also be meeting students to share their passion. For the occasion, Paris 2024 also launched a choreographed video to encourage young people to move more. Full info here. In addition, Paris 2024 and the French Development Agency (AFD) signed a cooperation agreement to initiate and support projects that combine sport and sustainable development, in France and around the world.  Through this commitment, Paris 2024 will roll out its Legacy and Sustainability Strategy and its activities in the fields of education, health, integration, gender equality, disability and peace through sport beyond national boundaries. Full details here.

Recognised organisations

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) concluded its ninth and penultimate Project Review with the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee on 6 February, declaring it was “encouraged and confident” about preparations for this summer’s Paralympic Games. The IPC discussed several topics during the Project Review, which took place over three days and included a site visit to the new Olympic Stadium.  In addition to participation from the IPC and Tokyo 2020 representatives, three National Paralympic Committees – Canada, Great Britain and Japan – took part in the Project Review. Full details here.

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