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08 Sep 2015
IOC News

Olympic Highlights



The IOC announced a two million dollar fund that will be made available to NOCs for programmes focused on refugees. “We have all been touched by the terrible news and the heartbreaking stories in the past few days. With this terrible crisis unfolding across the Middle East, Africa and Europe, sport and the Olympic Movement wanted to play its part in bringing humanitarian help to the refugees. We made a quick decision that we needed to take action and to make this fund available immediately,” said the IOC President, Thomas Bach. “We have a long term relationship with the United Nations and with the UNHCR and we draw on their help and expertise.  We know through experience that sport can ease the plight of refugees, many of them young people and children, be they in the Middle East, Africa, Europe or in other parts of the world. Our thoughts are with the many refugees risking their lives and the lives of their families to escape danger. ” NOCs and other interested parties will be asked to submit projects to the IOC for funding. The fund itself is made up of one million dollars from the IOC and a further one million from Olympic Solidarity.  Full press release here.

© IOC / Arnaud Meylan

As part of the new Invitation Phase for the Olympic Games candidature process, initiated in the framework of the Olympic Agenda 2020 reforms, President Bach met members of the Los Angeles 2024 Olympic candidature, including Mayor Eric Garcetti and Los Angeles 2024 Chairman Casey Wasserman. USOC Chairman and IOC Member Larry Probst, and USOC Chief Executive Scott Blackmun also took part.

© IOC / Bertrand Rey

To commemorate the anniversary of the death of the founder of the modern Olympic Games, Pierre de Coubertin, on 2 September, IOC President laid a wreath in front of Coubertin’s statue in the IOC garden, just outside his office in Lausanne. “We owe Baron Pierre de Coubertin a great deal”, said President Bach. “It is thanks to him that we exist as an organisation. It is also thanks to him that we have our headquarters here in Lausanne, where this year we celebrate 100 years since he made the ‘Olympic Capital’ our home.” Celebrations marking the 100-year bond between the IOC and the city of Lausanne are taking place throughout 2015. Full press release here.

© IOC / Arnaud Meylan

During a ceremony held at the IOC headquarters, IOC Vice-President and Australian Olympic Committee President John Coates presented Australian cyclist Michael Rogers with a bronze medal from the Olympic Games Athens 2004, in the presence of the IOC President and Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) President Brian Cookson. Rogers was raised from fourth to third place in the men’s individual time trial, following the disqualification of American rider Tyler Hamilton in 2012. The formal ceremony is in line with Recommendation 17 of Olympic Agenda 2020, which aims to honour clean athletes who are awarded an Olympic medal Full press release here.

© FISA Igor Meijer

On 6 September, President Bach went to Aiguebelette (France) for the World Rowing Championships, where he talked to many of the athletes taking part. He was accompanied by the President of the World Rowing Federation, Jean-Christophe Rolland. He also met the French Secretary of State for Sport, Thierry Braillard and the Secretary General of INTERPOL, Jürgen Stock.

In Lausanne, the President held discussions with IOC Vice-President and Chair of the Coordination Commission for Tokyo 2020, John Coates, as well as IOC Honorary Member and President of the Organising Committee for the Olympic Games Rio de Janeiro 2016 Carlos Arthur Nuzman.

President Bach held discussions with Organising Committee for the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 President Cho Yang-ho on the preparations for these Games.

© IOC / Arnaud Meylan

The IOC President attended a part of a seminar for sponsors of the German National Olympic Committee (DOSB). Along with IOC Executive Board Member Claudia Bokel, he spoke about the important role of sponsors for the Olympic Movement, as well as the implementation of the Olympic Agenda 2020 recommendations.
With the President of the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF), Chungwon Choue, preparations for the next Olympic Games, Rio de Janeiro 2016, were addressed, as was Olympic Agenda 2020. President Choue was also able to inform President Bach about a new peace initiative.

© IOC / Bertrand Rey

During this week, President Bach also chaired a meeting of the International Olympic Truce Foundation. On this occasion, he spoke with the Foundation’s Vice-Presidents, George Papandreou and Fani Palli Petralia. Besides Olympic Agenda 2020, their discussions centred around the role of sport to promote education, health and the development of peace; as well as the upcoming United Nations Resolution on the Olympic Truce.

© IOC / Bertrand Rey

Also this week, the President hosted Isidros Kouvelos, the President of the International Olympic Academy; as well as David Wallechinsky, the President of the International Society of Olympic Historians (ISOH) and Bill Mallon, former ISOH President.

© IOC / Bertrand Rey

At The Olympic Museum, the President attended the MEMOS XVIII (Executive Masters in Sport Organisations Management) certificate award ceremony. MEMOS is an Olympic Solidarity programme, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary. More than 650 people have now graduated from this very successful programme, which has trained an important network of top-level sports administrators around the world.


After its success in 2011 and 2014, the fifth edition of the biggest international conference on sports medicine and exercise will again be organised in Monaco, from 16 to 18 March 2017. As a prelude to this three-day event, the Scientific Committee is launching a request for proposals concerning the programme and speakers. The deadline for proposals is 2 November 2015. Organised every three years by the IOC, through its Medical and Scientific Commission, this Conference brings together eminent international specialists in injury and illness prevention, with the aim of collaborating and sharing the latest discoveries and trends so as to better protect the wellbeing of athletes on and off the competition field. Full press release here.



Monique Berlioux, who was the IOC Director from 1971 to 1985, died on 27 August at the age of 91. An elite swimmer, she participated in the Olympic Games London 1948 and was French champion several times. After serving in the Ministry of Youth and Sports, she joined the IOC in 1967. Head of press and public relations until 1971, she then became the IOC Director, a position she held until she resigned in 1985.




Held from 25 to 30 August in Singapore, the fifth edition of the Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA) World Junior Swimming Championships saw 17 junior world records being set. A total of 680 young swimmers aged 14 to 18 took part in this competition, which comprised 42 events. Info at



The World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) has informed us that the Pan American Taekwondo Union (PATU) and the Americas Paralympic Committee (APC) have signed a historic MoU which will see the two organisations working together to develop the practice of para-taekwondo throughout the region, with the objective of having this discipline included at the Parapan American Games. The MoU was signed by PATU President Jiho Choi (right of photo) and Jose Luis Campo (left) on 30 August on the occasion of the Argentina Taekwondo Open in Buenos Aires. This MoU will see the APC and PATU encourage greater cooperation between their member national associations and National Paralympic Committees (NPCs) for the promotion of para-taekwondo in each country. Info at



© Bahrain NOC

The Bahrain NOC recently launched “Tawasul”, a new initiative aimed at maintaining strong links with the first generation of sports personnel in Bahrain. NOC Secretary General Abdulrahman Askar, accompanied by NOC officials, visited the former President of the Bahrain Volleyball Association and Arab Volleyball Organisation, Mohammed Hamada (photo above). The NOC wanted to use this visit to pay tribute to Mohammed Hamada’s efforts and important contribution to the sports movement in Bahrain.

© Bostwana NOC

At the end of August, the Botswana NOC celebrated Olympic Day in the village of Letlhakane in the north-west of the country, in cooperation with the Boteti sub-district. The activities programme featured a 10km run (photo above), aerobics, cycling and women’s football. A message from the IOC President was read by the NOC Second Vice-President, Letsholo Letsholo. The Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Culture, Kgopotso Ramoroka, encouraged participants to promote the benefits of physical exercise to improve their quality of life; discover new sports; and embrace the Olympic values. Info at

Opening ceremony of the Youth School Games in Fortaleza. © Brazilian Olympic Committee

More than 3,800 student athletes enrolled in the Youth School Games Fortaleza 2015 will have special support during the event. A team of Ambassadors including Olympic marathon medal-winner Vanderlei Cordeiro de Lima, Olympic volleyball champion Hélia Fofão plus 10 Olympic or Pan-American athletes will be in Fortaleza from 4 to 12 September to support the students as they train in pools or on racetracks, courts and mats, and beyond.  Besides detecting potential high-performance athletes, the goal of the event is to contribute to the social integration of young people through sport. As the main school sports event in the country, the School Games include more than two million young people in city and state trials, organised by states and cities, representing 40,000 schools in nearly 4,000 cities in Brazil. The national phase, organised by the Brazilian NOC since 2005, brings together athletes from 26 states plus the Federal District Federation in each age group. The Games are organised and delivered by the NOC, in partnership with the Ministry of Sports and Organizações Globo, supported by the Government of Ceará and the City of Fortaleza, with sponsorship from Coca-Cola. Info at

© Colombian NOC

At the end of August, the Colombian NOC welcomed a delegation from the Russian Federation. NOC President Baltazar Medina hosted this meeting, which included an agreement between the Russian and Colombian governments concerning cooperation between the two countries in the areas of medicine and doping controls, among other things. Info at

© Guatemalan NOC

On 2 September, the sports centre which houses the Guatemala NOC and the Autonomous Sports Confederation of Guatemala hosted the Guatemalan athletes who won medals at the 17th Pan-American Games which took place in Toronto (Canada) in July. Besides the athletes, the coaches, technical directors and other delegates were also honoured (photo above). A certificate from the Pan-American Sports Organisation (PASO) was presented to each one. Info at

© Peruvian NOC

From 24 to 27 August, the city of Tumbes hosted the first sports administration course, organised annually by the Peruvian NOC on a national level, under the auspices of Olympic Solidarity. This course was attended by 30 people (photo above), including sports psychologists, coaches, sports physicians and other leaders from the city. The subjects addressed included the principles of the Olympic Movement, the Olympic values, ethical issues related to doping, culture and Olympic education, the importance of sport in society, gender integration and equality, and training for staff and volunteers. The next course will take place in Cajamarca from 9 to 12 September. Info at



On 2 September, the IOC announced the names of the 39 young people who have been chosen as Young Ambassadors for the Winter Youth Olympic Games (YOG) Lillehammer 2016. This impressive, eclectic list includes active athletes, featuring Olympians and former YOG participants, sports coaches, students and young graduates, all aged between 18 and 28. Although they come from diverse backgrounds, the Young Ambassadors, who were appointed by their respective NOCs, all have the same mission – to support the YOG athletes and guide the young members of their community thanks to the experience gained at the YOG. Full press release here.


© Fiona Goodall/Getty Images

Meeting in Auckland (New Zealand), the General Assembly of the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) elected Louise Martin (photo) as CGF President. She thus becomes the first female President in the history of the CGF. She succeeds IOC Member Tunku Imran. The President of SportScotland, Louise Martin was also Vice-President of the Organising Committee for the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Furthermore, the city of Durban (South Africa) was chosen to host the Commonwealth Games in 2022. This is the first time that an African city will organise this event. These Games will start on 18 July, the date of birth of Nelson Mandela. Info at

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