IOC President Thomas Bach headed for Jakarta, Indonesia, this week for the 18th Asian Games, where he attended the closing ceremony.On the way he stopped off in Seoul (Republic of Korea), to meet President Moon Jae-in.
In a special ceremony at the Blue House in Seoul, President Bach awarded the Olympic Order in Gold to the President of the Republic of Korea, Moon Jae-in. The award was given in recognition of the invaluable roleof President Moon in the great success of the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, which included the participation of athletes from the NOC of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Speaking after the ceremony, President Moon thanked President Bach and the IOC for the honour. "The reason for the success of the Games as 'Peace Olympics' is all down to you and to your leadership, and the great support of the IOC," said President Moon.
After the ceremony, the two leaders held face-to-face talks at the Blue House, where they discussed the options for having joint teams, such as in the mixed relay, and other joint activities during the next two editions of the Games, and in such a way further contribute through sport to peaceful rapprochement on the Korean peninsula. They agreed to continue these discussions at a working level, including with the two Korean NOCs. They also discussed the success of the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, particularly in financial terms,with the Organising Committee having already announced a substantial profit.
Once in Jakarta, for the Asian Games, the IOC President, accompanied by the President of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) and Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) President, Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, under whose leadership the Games were organised, paid a courtesy visit to the President of the Indonesian Republic, Joko Widodo, at the Presidential Palace in Bogur, near the Indonesian capital. Speaking after an hour-long meeting, President Widodo announced that Indonesia would be a candidate for the Olympic Games 2032. He said: “After the excellent experience of the Asian Games we now believe that we can host the very biggest sporting event. In Indonesia we believe we can host the Olympic Games 2032.”
President Bach added:“The IOC really appreciates Indonesia's candidature for 2032. With the great success of the Asian Games, Indonesia has demonstrated it has all the ingredients to organise Olympic Games in a very successful way. The Asian Games build a very solid foundation for such a candidature. It is a great decision which gives the youth of this young country a vision for the future and capitalises on the success of the Asian Games.” During the visit, President Bach was accompanied by Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah and by the President of the Indonesian NOC, Erick Thohir, who is also Chairman of the Organising Committee of the Asian Games and joined President Bach in many of the meetings.
The IOC President also discussed the excellent organisation of the Asian Games with the Vice-President of Indonesia, Jusuf Kalla, who is also head of the Steering Committee of the Games Organising Committee. Also present was the country’s Finance Minister, Sri Mulyani Indrawati. Both welcomed and supported the Indonesian candidature, which they said had been made possible by the reforms of Olympic Agenda 2020.
In a press conference, the President praised the OCA and its President, Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, and the Organising Committee, under Chairman Erick Thohir, for “truly excellent Games which give a great example to all.”
A meeting was also held with the members of the OCA Executive Committee. The excellent cooperation between the two organisations, Asia’s important role in the Olympic Movement, the next Olympic Games and the participation of the two Koreas in the Asian Games were among the subjects addressed.
In Jakarta, the President had meetings with IOC Member Habu Gumel; the President of the NOC of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Kim Il Guk; the President of the NOC of Kazakhstan, Timur Kulibayev; and representatives of the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF), including the Secretary General, Mohammed Jalood. He also attended a dinner hosted by Rita Subowo, a former IOC Member in Indonesia.
The President also met Jack Ma, founder and Executive Chairman of IOC TOP Partner Alibaba, and they discussed future cooperation.
The President attended several sports competitions (volleyball, squash, judo and rugby 7s) and toured the athletes’ village, before taking part in the closing ceremony of the Asian Games which have seen 11,300 athletes from across Asia competing in 67 sports/disciplines (or 465 events).
LA 2028 updated representatives of the IOC and International Paralympic Committee (IPC) on their first coordinated visit to Los Angeles since the city was awarded the Olympic Games 2028 on its vision to implement an innovative Games plan that will benefit Angelenos for decades to come. For IOC Coordination Commission Chair Patrick Baumann, “LA 2028’s focus in the last year has been on developing plans to deliver unique and unforgettable Games that are also in line with Olympic Agenda 2020’s the New Norm. This includes a continued focus on legacy while laying the foundation for a fiscally responsible, values-led organisation that is staffed with a knowledgeable, dynamic team.” During its two-day visit, the IOC heard updates on LA’s progress towards ensuring its youth sports programme will provide maximum benefits to its citizens, with further details set to be put forward next year. Full press release here.
On 31 August, the Medical and Scientific Commission hosted the fourth graduation ceremony for sports physicians and the second graduation ceremony for sports physical therapies. The Commission Chair and IOC Vice-President Uğur Erdener, first welcomed 26 students out of the 44 successful sports physician students, representing 33 different countries. He then welcomed 15 students out of the 25 successful sports physical therapies students, representing 11 different countries. Recognising the importance of the support team in promoting both health and performance, the Medical and Scientific Commission decided to launch the sports physician postgraduate programme in 2013, and the sports physical therapies postgraduate programme in 2015.
OTHER OLYMPIC NEWS
The Olympic Channel recently celebrated its two-year anniversary with more than 11,000 videos representing all Olympic sports disciplines and 206 countries; 50 original series; partnerships with 75 sports federations and organisations; and availability in 11 languages. The over-the-top (OTT) global media destination was launched in August 2016 following the Closing Ceremony ofRio 2016in support of the IOC’s goal, set out in Olympic Agenda 2020, of providing a new way to engage younger generations, fans and new audiences with the Olympic Movement all year round. More info here.
INTERNATIONAL SPORTS FEDERATIONS
The International Equestrian Federation (FEI) launched its new #BeOne campaign in view of the upcoming FEI World Equestrian Games, which will take place in Tryon (USA) from 11 to 23 September. This campaign reinforces the importance of unity and the bond between horse and athlete in top-level sport. The eighth edition of the Equestrian Games will bring together 1,000 athletes and 1,500 horses to compete in eight disciplines. Some 500,000 spectators from over 70 countries are expected to attend. More info here.
At the recent Fencing World Championships in Wuxi (People’s Republic of China), the International Fencing Federation (FIE)’s “Donate Your Fencing Gear” programme was in full swing. Launched a year ago, the programme has developed quickly and enjoyed strong participation and success in having athletes, coaches and manufacturers donate fencing equipment to federations and athletes in need. In Wuxi, 40 fencers – including members of the FIE Athletes’ Commission and world championship medallists – donated more than 200 good-quality items. Countries that will receive the gear to assist with their national fencing programmes and support athletes include American Samoa and Samoa, Paraguay, Philippines, Mexico, Benin and Morocco. More info at www.fie.org.
The International Judo Federation (IJF) Academy has been officially recognised as an Autonomous Higher Education Institute by the National Commission for Further and Higher Education of Malta (NCFHE). The Academy was set up in 2013 by IJF President Marius Vizer. To date, over 2,000 students from over 100 countries have taken part in (levels 1 and 2) training courses. The ceremony was held in Malta, where a level 1 practical session was held in the presence of several Olympic and world championship medallists. With this recognition, the IJF becomes the first IF to have its Academy certified internationally. More details here.
The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) has confirmed 26 host cities for the 2019 ITTF World Junior Circuit. This circuit is the only junior (under 18) and cadets’ (under 15) regular table tennis tour for young up-and-coming stars to acquire valuable experience playing with other top juniors from all around the world and prepare them for their senior’s debut internationally. Info at www.ittf.com.
The 52nd International Shooting Sports Federation (ISSF) World Championship in all shooting events kicked off in Changwon (Republic of Korea) on 1 September. Some 1,800 athletes from 91 countries are participating in the competition, which will run until 15 September, and will assign 60 Olympic Quota Places for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. Twelve athletes from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea are also participating in the Championship, competing for the first time in an ISSF event held in Korea. Former UN Secretary-General and IOC Ethics Commission Chair Ban Ki-moon participated in the “Changwon Peace and Democracy Forum” organised during the Championship, along with ISSF President Olegario Vázquez Raña (photo), who is also an IOC Honorary Member. More info at www.issf-sports.org.
The International Triathlon Union (ITU) announced that the 2019 Winter Triathlon World Championships will take place in the Italian town of Asiago, in the heart of the Alps, on 9 and 10 February. Winter triathlon is one of the newest events on the ITU calendar, with 8km running and 14km mountain biking – both on snow – and 12km cross-country skiing. More info here.
Preparations for breaking’s debut at the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) Buenos Aires 2018 are on the home straight following a successful preparatory meeting for International Technical Officials in Berlin (Germany) at the end of August. Members of the World DanceSport Federation (WDSF) attended the meeting, held at the Flying Steps Academy. With six weeks until the YOG, the officials discussed a number of important topics, including the Trivium judging system, the competition schedule, Rule 50 of the Olympic Charter, the Culture and Education Programme (CEP), communications and social media, and event preparations. The competition will take place on 7, 8, 10 and 11 October in the Urban Park in Buenos Aires. Some 24 athletes (12 girls and 12 boys) from 18 countries will compete. More info here.
NATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEES
In context of promotion of the Youth Olympic Games Buenos Aires 2018, the Albanian NOC has organized some sport activities in Divjaka National Park’s Sports Camp, involving youths of Divjaka Municipality’s schools. Young people have been playing togethervolleyball, water polo and some other sport games.The NOC has also informed them about YOG, Olympic Education and Olympic Values.
Furthermore, last August, Albanian NOC President Viron Bezhani, Secretary General Stavri Bello, and Executive Committee members welcomed two medallists of the Tarragona 2018 Mediterranean Games: Luiza Gega, 3,000m steeplechase gold medallist, and Krenar Zeneli, (56kg) boxing silver medallist. The athletes were accompanied by their coaches and the presidents and secretaries general of their respective federations. On this occasion, the NOC President announced the decision taken by the NOC Executive Committee to award remuneration to these two athletes for their medals. Info at www.nocalbania.org.al
In August, the city of Salta hosted a sports administration course for local officials. This Olympic Solidarity programme is implemented every year by the NOC of Argentina in various provinces across the country. In Salta, the course was led by national directors Andrea Martinez Funes and Dante Parra in the presence of local provincial authority representatives Sergio Plaza and Francisco Medina Caso. Info at www.coarg.org.ar.
The Aruban NOC has just published a commemorative book honouring the 46 athletes who competed at the Olympic Games from 1952 to 2016. These athletes represented Aruba, the Netherlands Antilles or the Netherlands. NOC Secretary General Nicole Hoevertsz, also an IOC Executive Board member, attended the launch ceremony with several athletes.
The Bahrain NOC is following the directives of its President, who is also Chairman of the Supreme Council for Youth and Sports, Sheik Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa, to initiate a “green policy” to replace paper transactions with electronic ones. A committee, tasked with carrying out this initiative, had its third meeting chaired by Mai Al Binkhalil, in the presence of other committee members and representatives of the Information and eGovernment Authority. The meeting reviewed the e-projects launched by the NOC and others that are being prepared. The Authority expressed willingness to support any esports projects that support young athletes and sports activities in general, and the NOC specifically. Info at www.boc.bh.
The Brazil Olympic Committee (COB) has just hired a Compliance Officer to preserve its ethical culture and integrity. William Evangelista da Silva (photo), a lawyer, will report directly to the Compliance Committee of the COB Ethics Council, and will manage the COB Reporting and Ethics Channel established in May this year. Evangelista da Silva is experienced in the implementation and management of the compliance programme of public infrastructure and lighting sector companies. The Ethics Council was established when Paulo Wanderley took office as COB president and is formed of five members elected on 23 March 2018. More info at www.cob.org.br
In August, Team Canada opened its “Sois Toi” [Be You] pop-up stores in Montreal in celebration of Pride 2018. Numerous Olympians attended the opening. In exchange for a contribution to You Can Play, Team Canada fans can purchase a customised “Be You/Sois Toi” T-shirt. You Can Play, an organisation dedicated to ensuring equality and safety for all athletes, is a partner of the Canadian NOC’s #OneTeam initiative. In collaboration with Egale Canada, the NOC signed a tripartite MoU on 2 December 2014, adopting measures to protect and support LGBTQ+ athletes, youth, and coaches in sport and schools. More info here.
The NOC of the Cayman Islands officially inaugurated its Olympic House on 16 August. These are the first premises that the NOC has ever owned. This has been made possible thanks to the support of local volunteers, sports federations, athletes, coaches, parents, NOC sponsors and the government of the Cayman Islands, as well as a contribution from the Pan-American Sports Organisation (PASO). The ceremony was held in the presence of Olympic athletes and PASO President Neven Ilic, who is also an IOC Member, and Secretary General Ivar Sisniega. The athletes present were also granted the right to use the letters OLY after their name, as part of an initiative by the World Olympians Association (WOA). Info here and on www.caymanolympic.org.ky.
An extraordinary assembly of the federations affiliated to the Venezuelan NOC approved the creation of a Sports Justice Commission. The Commission will be responsible for resolving internal conflicts in sport, and for approving the first steering committee of the Commission that was sworn in. Chaired by Bernabé Pérez, the Commission will comprise: René Molina, First Vice-President; Tulio Sánchez, Second Vice-President; José Angarita, Secretary General; Efraín Astor, Treasurer; Solange Delgado, member; and Cristina Eschel, Carlos Molinar, Juan Carlos Delgado and Aleydilic Ortega, alternate members. The Commission’s term runs from 2018 to 2022.
ORGANISING COMMITTEES FOR THE OLYMPIC GAMES
Worldwide Olympic Partner Coca-Cola, which has supported every edition of the Olympic Games since 1928, has announced that it will partner with the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Torch Relay through its Japanese subsidiary. This agreement is designed to leverage Coca-Cola’s experience to help host unforgettable and fun Olympic Games for spectators and athletes alike. Starting with the Olympic Games Barcelona 1992, Coca-Cola has supported 13 Olympic Torch Relays. The concept for the Tokyo 2020 Torch Relay will be “Hope Lights Our Way”, uniting the Japanese people around messages of supporting, accepting and encouraging one another, as well as showcasing solidarity with the regions still recovering from the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. More info here.
ORGANISING COMMITTEES FOR THE YOUTH OLYMPIC GAMES
BUENOS AIRES 2018
"Olímpicos", composed by renowned Argentine musician Leo Sujatovich, will be played at the podiums during the victory ceremonies of the Youth Olympic Games Buenos Aires 2018. Sujatovich has an impressive resumé. He was a keyboard player for Luis Alberto Spinetta in his legendary band, Spinetta Jade. Before that, he played with PorSuiGieco, Nito Mestre and Tantor. Later, he created the soundtracks for 16 films. He was also nominated for a Latin Grammy for the album Trío de Cámara-Tangos. More details here.
More than 15 IFs, organising committees and service providers have already joined the new .sport digital ecosystem, delivered by the Global Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF), ahead of the official launch period, which opens on 4 September. World Archery, the International Testing Agency (ITA) and the Youth Olympic Games Lausanne 2020 are just three of the latest organisations to join the .sport digital revolution. From 4 September to 6 November, sports organisations, companies and individuals throughout the wider sports world will have the opportunity to apply for their own exclusive extensions, through https://start.sport or one of the GAISF’s accredited providers of .sport registration services. From January 2019, the extension will then be open for general availability (acceptance still subject to approval from the GAISF). More info here.
The 2023 Winter Universiade will take place in Lake Placid, the New York winter sports destination. The International University Sport Federation (FISU) signed the host city contract after New York State Governor Andrew M. Cuomo had signed an Executive Order officially authorising Lake Placid and the surrounding region to host this 31st edition. It will be the second time that Lake Placid has hosted this event – the first time being in 1972. Over 3,000 athletes from 60 countries and about 600 universities will be expected in Lake Placid in 2023. As a reminder, the next two editions of the Winter Universiade will be held in Krasnoyarsk (Russian Federation) in 2019, then Lucerne (Switzerland) in 2021. More info here.