- 31 Oct 2007
- Olympic News
UN adopts Olympic Truce Resolution
Today, the 62nd Session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, chaired by Srgjan Kerim, adopted the Olympic Truce Resolution for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Through this resolution, the UN invites its member States to observe and promote peace during Games-time in order to protect the interests of athletes and sport in general, and to contribute, through sport, to the search for peaceful and diplomatic solutions to the world's conflicts.
Broad support from the world's community
Introduced by the Games host country China on behalf of the IOC, and entitled “Building a peaceful and better world through sport and the Olympic ideal”, the resolution was co-sponsored by 187 member States of the General Assembly. Nawal El Moutawakel, Minister for Youth and Sport in Morocco, Olympic champion and an IOC member, emphasised in her address to the General Assembly that: "More than this, sport, as a vehicle for the values of humanism, such as tolerance and understanding between peoples, is today an indispensable element and a permanent school of life which we must continue to cultivate in order to promote peace and solidarity internationally."
Contributing to the UN Millennium Development Goals
The adoption of the Olympic Truce Resolution not only demonstrates the role of sport as a means of promoting peace, but also recognises the increasingly important role of sport in the implementation of internationally agreed development goals such as the Millennium Development goals. This was clearly expressed by IOC President Jacques Rogge during his speech to the General Assembly: "Sport unites the principles that the Olympic Movement holds dear – education, sustainability, non-discrimination, universality, humanism and solidarity. These are also the principles at the core of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. These are the principles that drive far-reaching social change." The IOC President was accompanied by several IOC members.
Countdown to Beijing
Looking ahead to the upcoming Games in August 2008, the IOC President explained that "the 2008 Beijing Summer Games will reach one-fifth of the world's population in China alone. It is predicted that four billion people – the most ever – will watch the Beijing Games. This is a wonderful opportunity for China and the world to witness the Olympic values in action – to see first-hand the excellence, friendship and respect that sport brings to life, to witness the harmony, understanding and peace that sport can engender." Approximately 10,500 athletes from 205 National Olympic Committees, all with different backgrounds, are expected to participate in the 2008 Games. Liu Qi, President of the Beijing Olympic Games Organising Committee, stated that "the Olympic Games may not change the world in an instant, but we have every reason to believe that the legacy of the Olympic Truce can inspire the world in striving towards the long-lasting peace and common prosperity."
Sport for Peace Projects
Beyond its engagement for the Olympic Truce Resolutions in the Olympic Games context, the IOC, with various partners, implements several "Sport for Peace" grass roots projects across the globe. In this connection, the IOC and the UN have established an impressive record of collaboration which was also referred to in the report "Sport for development and peace" of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to the General Assembly today. The report was presented by Adolf Ogi, the UN Secretary-General's Special Adviser on Sport for Development and Peace. One of the latest UN-IOC joint initiatives took place in Liberia last spring. During a five-week nationwide Sport for Peace Programme, youth and community leaders from 15 Liberian counties participated in various sporting activities such as football and volleyball. The project used sport as a vehicle to bring people from different communities peacefully together – not a matter of course in today’s Liberia. The sporting activities, complemented by public awareness campaigns about social issues like HIV/AIDS, sexual exploitation and abuse and community reconciliation, were made possible through a donation of sports equipment by the IOC.
Remarks of Dr. Jacques Rogge President, International Olympic Committee to the United Nations