POSTED: Thursday April 8th 2010

The President of the International Military Sports Council becomes a Peace and Sport Ambassador

Major General Gola was presented with an emblem of a Golden Dove by HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco and Joel Bouzou at the CISM ‘Sport for Peace' Forum.

HSH Prince Albert II of MONACO, Joël BOUZOU, Maj. Gen. Gianni GOLA in AOSTE  / Image:  PEACE AND SPORT
HSH Prince Albert II of MONACO, Joël BOUZOU, Maj. Gen. Gianni GOLA in AOSTE / Image: PEACE AND SPORT

Monaco, Brussels, 8 April 2010 - On the occasion of the first Winter Military World Games that took place from 20-25 March in the Italian town of Aosta, Major General Dr. Gianni Gola, President of the International Military Sports Council (CISM) was appointed as an international Ambassador for “Peace and Sport,  l’Organisation pour la Paix par le Sport ".

Major General Gola was presented with an emblem of a Golden Dove, to symbolize his commitment, by HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, Patron of Peace and Sport, and Joel Bouzou, President and Founder of Peace and Sport. The ceremony took place at the end of CISM ‘Sport for Peace' Forum which was held immediately prior to the Military Games.

Major General Dr. Gianni Gola, 64, is a distinguished member of the Olympic and sports family. President of International Military Sports Council since 1998, he has also been a member of the Olympic Truce Foundation since 2000 and member of the International Olympic Committee's ‘Sports for All Commission’ since 2003.

Passionate about sport and an athlete himself (he holds an Italian junior record in hammer-throw), Major General Dr. Gianni Gola got involved in CISM activities early in his military career in 1965. He has held many positions within CISM, notably Chief of the Italian Mission (1972-1995), Executive Director of the 1st Military World Games (1995) and Vice-President for Europe (1996-1998), before becoming President in 1998.

He was also President of the Track & Field Italian Federation from 1989 to 2004, twice a member of the Italian National Olympic Committee Executive Board (1991-1993 and 1997-1999), a member of the Council of the European Athletics Association (1999-2003) and of the IAAF (2001-2003).

In Italy, he is currently Major General of the ‘Guardia di Finanza’, (Italian Financial Military Police Force) Commanding Officer of the “Guardia di Finanza Sports Center”, a group of 350 elite athletes in 12 sports.

Under the leadership of Major General Dr. Gianni Gola, the International Military Sports Council has become a key player for peace through sport in the world. The organization operates in areas of conflict and post-conflict by using sport and sporting events as vehicles for reconciliation between different armed forces and a mechanism to improve relations between armed forces and civilian populations.

By appointing Major General Gola as an Ambassador, Peace and Sport undertakes to support and develop CISM’s action, especially by improving coordination with local civil sports calendars and integrating it more deeply into peace-keeping missions and mediation conducted by the United Nations.

Joël Bouzou said: "Through its many field actions, on a daily basis CISM demonstrates the unifying power of sport and its ability to put an end to hostility. It is enough to see these former soldiers who have faced each other on battle fields confront each other with friendship on the sports ground to be convinced! It is crucial that these best practices are made known to international and local decision makers so that they can be incorporated into strategies to deploy peace agreements throughout the world. It is the task that Peace and Sport’s networking platform, reinforced by its neutral status, will seek to achieve alongside Major General Dr. Gianni Gola.”

Major General Dr. Gianni Gola added: “Becoming a Peace and Sport Ambassador is an immense honour for me and for CISM. Military sport is already helping to improve education, social status and the lives of hundreds of thousands of young people in the world. I am proud to put this expertise to good use in Peace and Sport’s platform for action. This synergy will enable CISM to rise to many challenges in order to deploy more concrete and more effective sports programs which will contribute to the efforts of peace in the world.”

Major General Dr. Gianni Gola becomes Peace and Sport’s 11th Official Ambassador and will join the following:

-      Wilfried Lemke (Special Advisor to the UN Secretary General on Sport for Development and Peace),

-      Mario Pescante (Vice-President of the International Olympic Committee),

-      HRH Prince Nawaf Faisal Fahd Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia (IOC member, Vice-President of the NOC, Vice-President in charge of Youth in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia),

-      Hicham El Guerrouj (Olympic champion and IOC Member),

-      Adnan Houdrouge (CEO of Mercure International of Monaco, Vice-President of Peace and Sport),

-      Sir Philip Craven, MBE (President of the International Paralympic Committee)

-      Adolf Ogi (former President of the Swiss Confederation and Board Member of the NGO Right To Play),

-      Mikhail Prokhorov (Chairman of Onexim and President of the Russian Biathlon Union),

-      Yang Ho Cho (Chairman and CEO of Korean Air),



About Peace and Sport

Peace and Sport, L’Organisation pour la Paix par le Sport is a neutral and apolitical international initiative.

Peace and Sport puts sport and its structuring values at the heart of development projects led within communities in crisis around the world. With interventions in areas of post-conflict, extreme poverty or lacking social cohesion, Peace and Sport makes sport a vehicle for tolerance, respect, sharing and citizenship at the service of sustainable peace.

Supported by governments, world sport governing bodies, international organizations, major international companies in the private sector and international sports champions, Peace and Sport creates synergies between various different stakeholders to carry out four types of action:

-      Organizing an annual International Forum (next edition in Monaco, 1 - 3 December 2010)

-      a Resource Centre for sport and peace,

-      The Peace and Sport Awards, to reward individuals and initiatives contributing to peace,

-      Locally-based Projects; concrete actions in different regions of crisis in the world.

Today, Peace and Sport has operations in Cote d'Ivoire, Burundi, Israel-Palestine, Timor Leste, Colombia and plans to intervene in Haiti in the near future.

Peace and Sport was founded by Joel Bouzou, current President of the organisation. Mr. Bouzou is an Olympic medallist, world champion of Modern Pentathlon and current Secretary General for the International Union of Modern Pentathlon (UIPM). He is also Advisor to H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco.

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Keywords · Peace and Sport · Prince Albert of Monaco · Joel Bouzou · CISM · Gianni Gola

Name: Caroline Duboc
Organization: Peace and Sport
Phone: 79298543597

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