By Lei Lei (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-04-08 07:33
From left: National People's Congress Standing Committee Chairman Wu Bangguo, International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge and Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) President Mario Vazquez Rana at the 16th ANOC General Assembly in Beijing yesterday. AP
A declaration to give full support to the upcoming Beijing Games was approved by the heads of 205 national and regional Olympic committees yesterday at the morning session of their general assembly in the capital.
Announced by Gunilla Lindberg, secretary-general of the Association of the National Olympic Committees (ANOC), the declaration includes the following:
Athletes worldwide are willing to participate in the Beijing Games;
Any activities using the Olympic Games for political purposes will be rejected;
China has the confidence to seek solutions to its internal affairs.
The NOCs, under the International Olympic Committee (IOC), are responsible for organizing their respective countries' participation in the Games.
The special statement comes amid disruptions by Tibetan separatists and is expected to be issued after a joint meeting of the ANOC and the IOC Executive Board on Thursday.
The three-day biennial meeting of the ANOC in Beijing, which has attracted more than 700 representatives this time, will last till tomorrow, with the heads of national and regional Olympic committees worldwide coming together to discuss issues related to the Olympics.
Wu Bangguo, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, attended the opening ceremony yesterday morning, reiterating that China will fulfill its commitment to hold a successful Olympic Games this August.
"Holding the Olympic Games is the longtime expectation of Chinese people and hosting a high-level Olympic Games and a high-level Paralympic Games is the solemn commitment we have made to the whole world," Wu said.
"In the lead-up to the Games the Chinese government and Chinese people will fulfill our commitment to ensure the success of the Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Games. We warmly welcome athletes, coaches and guests from all over the world to participate, witness and report the Beijing Games."
"Organizing an Olympic Games is an extremely arduous and complex task. Only the closest cooperation between all members of the Olympic movement as well as the political will of China's government will make it possible to reach the high objectives sought with the Beijing Olympic Games," he said.
The issue of calls to boycott the Games also drew the attention of IOC President Jacques Rogge.
Some politicians have played with the idea of boycotts, but there is "no momentum for a generalized boycott", Rogge said.
"We need the unity of the Olympic movement to help us overcome the difficulties. Our major responsibility is to offer good games to the athletes who deserve them," Rogge said.
The ANOC assembly will be followed by an executive board meeting of the IOC in Beijing from April 10-11. It will include updates on preparations for the Beijing Games, the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics and 2012 London Summer Games.