PYEONGCHANG 2018 – UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY ADOPTS OLYMPIC TRUCE
14 November 2017
The United Nations General Assembly adopted yesterday November 13, in New York, a resolution calling for a peaceful organization of the PyeongChang Olympic Winter Games, approving by consensus respect for the traditional “Olympic Truce”.
The text was presented by South Korea, the host country of the next Games. It has been approved by North Korea, but also by the countries hosting the Games between 2020 and 2028, namely Japan, China, France and the United States. North Korea and United States signatories of the same document.
In the resolution, entitled “Building a better world and peace through sport and the Olympic ideal”, the General Assembly expressed “its hope that the PyeongChang Games will be a significant opportunity to promote an atmosphere of peace, development, tolerance and understanding on the Korean Peninsula and in Northeast Asia. ” It “also urges member states to observe the Olympic Truce individually and collectively.
Following the adoption of the resolution, IOC President Thomas Bach who was attending the General assembly together with Italian IOC Member Mario Pescante, said: “For the athletes who will gather in PyeongChang for the Olympic Winter Games, this resolution will carry a special significance, a deeply personal one. With the Olympic Truce resolution, the United Nation General Assembly is creating the conditions for all athletes to compete in peace. Only the UN Member States can guarantee the athletes a safe passage to the Olympic Games. They make it possible for all the Olympic athletes to realise their dream of a lifetime.”
He continued: “The Olympic athletes show the whole world that it is possible to compete with each other while living peacefully together under one roof at the same time.”
In his remarks, the President of the United Nations General Assembly H.E. Mr. Miroslav Lajčák said: “The Olympic Games and the United Nations aspire to the same ideal. This is an ideal based on humanity. It says that, no matter what is going on in state capitals around the world, people will always have a space in which to engage and connect. ”
The resolution calls for the Olympic Truce to be respected from seven days before the start of the Olympic Games in February 2018 until seven days after the Paralympic Games, and to use this opportunity to harness sport to foster and encourage concrete action that promotes dialogue and reconciliation during the Games and beyond. By adopting this resolution, the international community at the United Nations recognises the power of sport and the relevance of the Olympic Games to bring the world together in peaceful competition, providing hope for a better future.
The resolution was formally submitted to the General Assembly by the Republic of Korea, on behalf of the Olympic Movement and the Organising Committee of the Olympic Games PyeongChang 2018 (POCOG). Lee Hee-beom, President of POCOG, introduced it to the General Assembly.
Republic of Korea Olympic gold medallist and Honorary Ambassador for the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games 2018 Yuna Kim also addressed the General Assembly and said: “I firmly believe the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games will help spread the message of peace through one of the few languages that has the power to unite people around the world: the graceful and universal language of sport.”
The tradition of the Olympic Truce in Ancient Greece has been to ensure a halt of all hostilities, allowing the safe passage and participation of athletes and spectators taking part in the Olympic Games. Then as now, the Olympic Games are a symbol of hope and peace. The resolution reaffirms that the Olympic values of peace, solidarity and respect are as important across the world today as they were over 3,000 years ago, when the ancient Olympic Games first took place in Greece.
The Olympic Winter Games 2018 will take place in PyeongChang, Republic of Korea, from 9 to 25 February 2018 and will be followed by the Paralympic Games from 8 to 18 March 2018.