Baku 2015's preparations commended by European Olympic Committee
CHAD WISE / Sports Features Communications
(SFC) The Baku 2015 European Games local operating committee received praise from the European Olympic Committees inspection team Tuesday during its three-day visit.
Republic of Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev, European Olympic Committee President Patrick Hickey, and European Olympic Committee executive committee member Spyros Capralos discussed Azerbaijan’s work in the development of sports and preparation progress for the European Games in Baku.
The Executive Olympic Committee members were welcomed to the city by National Olympic Committee of the Republic of Azerbaijan Executive Committee member Mehriban Aliyeva, who is also the UNESCO goodwill ambassador and Baku 2015 European Games Organising Committee chair.
“The Baku 2015 Games will leave a great legacy of new venues, infrastructure ad inspiration for the communities and youth of Azerbaijan and Europe as a whole,” Capralos said.
“In the six months since our first Coordination Commission visit, Jim Scherr has come on board as Chief Operating Officer and has quickly put in place a first-rate, internationally-experienced senior team who have hit the ground running.”
Azerbaijan Minister for Sport and Youth and Baku European Games Operations Committee Chief Executive Officer Azad Rahimov welcomed Capralos and Hickey to Baku and led a tour of the venues to be used at the European Games.
“We are delighted to welcome the Coordination Commission to Baku for the second time and have enjoyed taking them through our plans and progress,” Rahimov said.
“I am grateful for the involvement of President Aliyev and the First Lady in our visit,” Hickey said. “Their commitment to hosting the first European Games has been unwavering and their involvement in the plans and progress is welcomed.
“BECOG has reached a new level of detail in its planning for these historic first European Games relating to the sports competition schedule and venues. This will pave the way for planning to proceed to more advanced stages of venue and sports operations as well as accommodation, transport and other core Games sectors and services for athletes, spectators, visitors and other groups in readiness for the Games.”
The Baku Organising Committee has recruited numerous operations experts and planners from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and other international events.
“With a little under 600 days until the Opening Ceremony of the Baku Games, everyone at BECOG is passionate and totally focused on putting on Games that Baku, the whole country of Azerbaijan and the continent of Europe can be proud of,” BECOG Chief Operating Officer Jim Scherr said.
“We have an experienced senior team in place and our planning is advanced. A huge amount of work has bee undertaken over the last six months and an immediate priority is to begin sharing the details of our Games with the National Olympic Committees, Sport Federations and other key stakeholders.”
“Our plans for the Baku 2015 Games have been significantly enhanced and strengthened from the highly productive meetings with the EOC Games experts, and we look forward towards the inaugural Baku 2015 Games,” Hickey said.
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