IOC President: “Sport is an anchor in a fragile world"

15 Nov 2016
IOC News IOC President

The IOC President outlined the success of the Olympic Games Rio 2016 as well as the Olympic Movement’s central role in an “ever more fragile world” in a speech on Tuesday.

President Bach told the audience at the XXI Annual General Assembly of the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) that the Olympic Games Rio 2016 had been an “outstanding success” with huge engagement around the world.  The President reported that more than half the world’s population had watched the Olympic Games, and that there had been record numbers of TV and digital broadcast hours, up 75% compared to the figures for the Olympic Games London 2012.  The IOC’s social media platforms had also created more than 5 billion impressions.

Despite an “atmosphere of doubt with allegations and accusations....when the dust settled there was a huge gap between published opinion and public opinion”, he told the Assembly. 

“If we compare where we stand in sport with the rest of society, we can really say that, in this fragile world, sport is an anchor of stability that more and more people are looking to and having confidence in. We must justify this confidence and remain an anchor of stability."

In this fragile world, sport is an anchor of stability that more and more people are looking to and having confidence in. Thomas Bach IOC President

Later, addressing the allegations surrounding state sponsored doping in Russia particularly around the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014 he said: “If only part of the allegations are true this would be an unprecedented attack on the Olympic Games and Olympic Competitions.”

He went on to outline the two Commissions – the so-called Canivet Commission and Oswald Commission – which are looking into alleged doping and manipulation in Russia. They are led by the senior French constitutional judge and IOC Ethics Commission vice-chair Guy Canivet and by Swiss IOC Member Denis Oswald respectively.

"These Commissions will also allow the Russian perspective to be heard, which has not been the case so far," he said.

IOC/Greg Martin

President Bach also outlined how the Olympic Movement proposes to reform the WADA anti-doping system with far-reaching proposals. The aim, he said, was to make the system “independent from sports organizations and national interests.”

He also told the audience that “we are willing to make the investment if we have to”.

Talking of the recent reforms at the IOC implemented as a result of Olympic Agenda 2020 the President said that “without the Olympic Agenda 2020 reforms there would have been no candidates for 2024.”

Later in the day the Candidate Cities to host the Olympic Games 2024 gave presentations to the ANOC Assembly. The teams for Los Angeles, Budapest and Paris each gave an overview of their plans to stage the Olympic Games.

IOC/Greg Martin

On Monday, the IOC President took time out to visit the Aspire Academy in Doha which welcomes and trains athletes from around the world.  He praised the “great commitment to sport and a great commitment to the future of youth by Qatar.”

Later, he visited the Emir of Qatar where the President discussed the Aspire Academy with the Qatari head of state. The two leaders also discussed the great success of the Olympic Games Rio 2016 and particularly the Refugee Olympic Team. There was some discussion on future programs for supporting refugees.
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