UN General Assembly approves new dates of Olympic Truce for 2021 Summer Games
The UN General Assembly has confirmed new dates of the Olympic Truce for the Summer Games in Tokyo next year, the press service of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said in a statement on Tuesday, APA reports citing TASS.
"The United Nations (UN) General Assembly yesterday confirmed that the Olympic Truce for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 will now be observed from 16 July 2021 (seven days before the opening of the Olympic Games) to 12 September 2021 (seven days after the closing of the Paralympic Games)," the statement from the IOC reads.
"The resolution, entitled ‘Building a peaceful and better world through sport and the Olympic spirit,’ was originally passed unanimously and co-sponsored by 186 of the 193 UN Member States in December 2019," according to the statement. "But with the postponement of the Games of the XXXII Olympiad to 2021, the dates of observation have now been changed accordingly."
The 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo were scheduled to be held between July 24 and August 9, and the 2020 Summer Paralympic Games were planned to be organized between August 25 and September 6.
The IOC and the IPC (the International Paralympic Committee) announced on March 24 a decision to postpone for one year the tournaments in Japan due to the continuous COVID-19 spread. Yoshiro Mori, the head of the Tokyo-2020 Olympics Local Organizing Committee, announced on March 30 that the Summer Olympic Games in Japan next year will start on July 23 and the Summer Paralympic Games will begin on August 24.
Commenting on the UN General Assembly’s approval of the Olympic Truce, IOC President Thomas Bach said: "With their support, the governments of the world are emphasizing once more the unifying power of the Olympic Games."
"The Games are a celebration of the unity of humankind in all our diversity," Bach continued. "Athletes from all 206 National Olympic Committees and the IOC Refugee Olympic Team all enjoy the same rights, respecting each other and with the same rules applying to everyone without any kind of discrimination."
"This decision is also a strong sign of confidence that these Olympic Games will be the light at the end of the dark tunnel humankind is currently going through. We are very grateful to all the governments for this expression of trust in the Olympic Games," the IOC president added.
The tradition of the Olympic Truce goes back to 8th century BC in ancient Greece, when all athletes and relevant persons were guaranteed safe arrival, access and participation during the Games. The International Olympic Committee officially revived the tradition in 1992 and the following year the UN General Assembly supported the move.
Yoshiro Mori also hailed the the UN General Assembly’s decision to announce the Olympic Truce saying, "We welcome the United Nations General Assembly’s approval of the change in the observation period of the Olympic Truce to next summer, in accordance with the new scheduled dates for the Tokyo 2020 Games."
"As the worldwide spread of COVID-19 brings further difficulties to regions already struggling with conflict, we continue to place hope in the power of sport to bring people around the world together and help achieve peace," Mori stated. "Inspired by the adoption of this updated resolution, we will make all the more effort to utilize the priceless opportunity presented by the Tokyo 2020 Games to help build a peaceful and better world through sports."
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