Presentation of Baku-European Games-2015 takes place in the French city of Cannes -

Presentation of “Baku-European Games-2015” takes place in the French city of Cannes

On July 9, presentation of “Baku-European Games-2015” took place within the framework of the Days of Azerbaijani Culture in the French city of Cannes. Azerbaijan’s First Lady, President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, Chairperson of the European Games Organising Committee Mehriban Aliyeva and Vice-president of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation Leyla Aliyeva attended the ceremony.

The host of the event gave information about Azerbaijan, its history and culture, and emphasized that in about a year, Azerbaijan, a country rich in cultural treasures, will host the first European Games.

Addressing the ceremony, mayor of the city of Cannes David Lisnard noted that relations between Azerbaijan - the pearl of the Caucasus – and the city of Cannes – the pearl of the Mediterranean Sea – are developing. Noting that Days of Azerbaijani Culture were organized for the second time in Cannes, the mayor talked about Azerbaijan’s having rich cultural treasures and expressed confidence that the first European Games next year will be organized in Baku at the highest level.

Mehriban Aliyeva addressed the ceremony:

- Distinguished Guests.

Dear Friends.

Ladies and Gentlemen!

It is very pleasing to once more be with you in the city of Cannes. I welcome all of you from the bottom of my heart to this evening, and thank you for being with us at this event.

I’m very much honoured to have been an Honorary Citizen of the city of Cannes, and taking this opportunity, I would like to express my respect for all the residents of this nice city.

As it used to be every year, this year too, we feel your hospitality and friendship, and I would like to cordially thank everyone supporting us here, especially mayor of the city of Cannes Mr David Lisnard for the attention and respect shown towards us.

Dear Friends,

Our today’s meeting has been devoted to a very significant event to occur in the Azerbaijani history – the first European Games to be held in 2015 in Baku. As you know, according to a decision of the European Olympic Committee, the first European Games will be held in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan, and this decision has been welcomed by the people of Azerbaijan. For this decision, I cordially thank all members and the president of the European Olympic Committee.

Although the Olympic movement originated from Europe and was later restored in Europe, no European games have so far been held in Europe, and hosting of such games, which will enter the history as the first European Games, is the greatest honour for us, for Azerbaijan, at the same time, it is great responsibility.

Today Azerbaijan is known to the world as a sports country. Supporting sports and Olympic movement is one of the main directions of the state’s policy. After regaining our independence, we started to participate in Olympic Games since 1996, and, in a short time, our sportsmen reached big achievements. With every new game, the number of medals gained increases. Azerbaijani athletes won ten medals in the last Summer Olympic Games, and for these results we took the 15th place among the European countries, and 30th among the participants.

Much care and attention is shown in the country towards the development of the sports infrastructure, and in the last ten years, over 50 Olympic centres were built in the country. Number of the youth going in for sports and those that chose sports as a profession for themselves have recent years increased, and new perspectives and opportunities are facing these young people.

Our country has gained much experience in holding international sports events. European and world championships were held in Baku on various types of sport. The European championship for rhythmic gymnastics held last month in Baku have been appreciated by both sportsmen and also the sports society as very well organized.

Just taking into account these facts – achievements of our sportsmen, existing sports infrastructure, strong state support to sports and, of course, our country’s rapid economic development, the European Olympic Committee decided to hold these games in Azerbaijan.

Olympic Games will open a new page in Azerbaijan’s sports history and, of course, the first games will define the level of future games’ standards. Despite that only two and a half years are allocated for the preparation, Azerbaijan is determined to hold these games at the level of summer Olympic Games. All necessary measures are taken and the Organizing Committee is working hard to ensure this. We have built close partnership relations with international organizations and with the European Olympic Committee. We have been benefiting from the support of numerous volunteers and all necessary works are being performed. I’m hopeful the first European Games will be held in an environment of justice, fair competition, friendship and solidarity.

Dear Friends,

Taking this opportunity, I’m inviting you to visit our country. I’m hopeful, visiting our country during the first European Games, you will have a chance to acquaint yourselves with the history, culture of Azerbaijan, architectural monuments linking the East with the West, and traditions of the country.

Azerbaijan has become one of the world hubs in terms of tolerance and multiculturalism. Representatives of various nations and religions have centuries long lived in our country in the environment of friendship, mutual trust and peace. Today we treat the universal cultural diversity with respect, having preserved our traditions, roots and history.

Dear Friends.

We will organize this presentation – presentation of the European Games in various cities of Europe. But the first presentation is being held in France, in Cannes, and this is not by chance. France is a leading state of Europe, and the hub of universal culture. It is a state, which has reached great achievements. It is a friendly state for Azerbaijan. I’m very pleased the relations between our countries, especially in the humanitarian sphere, have risen to a new level. Events aiming to promote Azerbaijan more closely are held in various cities of France. A year ago, you may remember, Days of Azerbaijani Culture were held, which was a very big success. Agreements of fraternity are signed between Azerbaijani and French cities, and I’m hopeful this tradition will be continued by signing another agreement between the city of Cannes and one of the Azerbaijani cities.

Dear Friends,

In conclusion, I would like to mention that, in 1896, Olympic movement was restored by endeavours of eminent French public figure, pedagogue and writer Pierre Coubertin. Ever since then the Olympic movement’s experience brings people, nations, states together, building bridges and establishing peace, tranquillity and friendship. I’m hopeful the first European Games will worthily contribute to strengthening of these values.

I once more cordially thank all of you. Enjoy your evening.

Thank you.

X X X

A video-presentation devoted to “Baku-European Games-2015” took place at the ceremony. The video-material contained information about the works done during the past period, sports facilities built, as well as meetings held under the leadership of Chairperson of the European Games Organizing Committee Mehriban Aliyeva.

President of the French Olympic and Sports Committee Denis Masseglia said the holding of the first European Games in Azerbaijan will be a great event, and highly appreciated the works done in this regard. Emphasizing the high-level preparation works for the European Games, Mr Dennis Masseglia expressed confidence that Baku will successfully hold the European Games.

Then a dinner-party devoted to the presentation of “Baku-European Games-2015” took place. Azerbaijan’s masters of art performed at the ceremony with a concert programme.

The event was finalised by fireworks in the Croisette Boulevard under the music by Azerbaijani composers. 

 
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