January 24, 2015

“Looking forward to seeing you in Baku”

At the presentation of the Baku-2015 First European Games held on Thursday in Davos, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev concluded his speech with these words.


As at other meetings of this type, at the Davos Forum too, a number of significant events happen not around “round tables” recorded for later broadcasting, but at friendly parties. About 10 similar parties are held each day here. Participants of such events, for which entrance is only by invitations, first pass a number of guard posts and metal detector. Security service in Davos has always been high-level, and this year, security services are specifically alert due to the known sorrowful events. Organizers carefully watch who accept these invitations, who do not respond to the invitations, and come to a conclusionhaving observed how strong persons of the world intercourse between themselves in an unofficial environment.


Judging by the number of the visitors at the Azerbaijani party arranged on Thursday at Intercontinental Hotel, where the artistic exhibition devoted to Baku-2015 Games took place, a lot of people showed interest towards this country. Representatives of the world business circles were walking around with goblets of wine (water or juice), viewing nice design of the big hall, and, at times, looking at the attractive buffet. Apparently, most of these people were hungry after tense working day of the Davos Forum.


According to the rules, an official part took place before the dinner-party. Fortunately, this part of the event was not long and tiresome (usually it is not so). The official part was opened by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. Once a graduate of the Moscow State International Relations Institute, Ilham Aliyev spoke excellent English. It should be noted that the President receives information from the first sources – Mister Aliyev has long years been heading the National Olympic Committee of Azerbaijan.


Ilham Aliyev emphasized: “Baku’s being chosen  capital of the first European Games allowed us to seriously invest in certain projects. These projects would have been implemented anyway, but not so quick.”


For example, the Athletes village and a number of hotels have been constructed, 16 kilometres of promenade has been created. Ilham Aliyev said: “I’m hopeful all countries will send their strong athletes, as the level of Baku-2015 competitions will define the limits for further Games.”


The large sports events in Azerbaijan will not only limited to the European Games. For example, in 2016, for the first time, one phase of the Formula-1 competitions (European Grand Prix) and the World Chess Olympiad will be held in Baku. And in 2017, Baku will host the 4th Islamic Solidarity Games. Ilham Aliyev drew attention of the attendees to one point: “Imagine to yourself, within two years Azerbaijan will be the capital of both the European Games and the Islamic Games. This reflects the essence of Azerbaijan, a multinational and multi-confessional  country, where all nationals live in a friendly environment.” The Azerbaijani President stated later that the beauty, value and power of sport is that “representatives of countries being at war compete decently and shake a winner’s hand.”    


At the end, Mister Aliyev invited all attendees of the event to Baku, and they reacted to this invitation by unanimous applauses. 


After the President, the key representative of the “big sport” participating in this event – chairperson of the European Olympic Committee Patrick Hickey - took the floor. He sincerely thanked the Government of Azerbaijan for the endeavours shown to secure the success of the upcoming European Games. 


After watching the short but interesting documentary devoted to Baku-2015 Games, the guests tasted delicious dishes prepared by cooks from Azerbaijan in  dresses with national symbols on.