OTTAWA, May 23 -- The first full day of the 10th annual SportAccordConvention began in Canada's Quebec City Wednesday as 1,500delegates from amateur sporting and Olympic federations from aroundthe world waited for news on which cities are finalists to host the2020 Summer Olympics. The 15-member executive board of the International OlympicCommittee (IOC), which is meeting alongside the SportAccord eventin Quebec's capital city, announced in the early evening thatTokyo, Madrid and Istanbul had made the final cut. Doha, the capital city of the Gulf state of Qatar, and Baku,capital of Azerbaijan, were rejected after failing to make thefinal list for the 2016 Games to be held in Rio de Janeiro. The IOC will reveal the host city of the 2020 Summer Games inBuenos Aires on Sept. |
7, 2013, when Jacques Rogge will step down aspresident. However in Quebec City he has been a headliner. On Tuesday, the IOC boss was the keynote speaker at a CanadianOlympic Committee luncheon in Quebec City attended by over 4,100people, which raised over 800,000 Canadian dollars (about 783,000U.S. dollars) for the country's athletes.
While he praised Canada's dedication to amateur sports later in aspeech to convention delegates, Rogge sidestepped any questionsfrom reporters as to whether the ongoing student protests over theprovincial government of Quebec's decision to raise universitytuition fees could harm the province's future chances of hostinginternational sports events. Quebec City is campaigning to host a Winter Olympics afterpostponing its bid last year for the 2022 Games. However, the student unrest did make an appearance at theSportAccord Convention on Tuesday. A man, wearing a tuxedo,appeared in front of the stage where Canadian Olympic Committeepresident Marcel Aubut was about to speak, and mentioned Montrealriots over the weekend in which he said police gassed and clubbedstudents, before quickly exiting.
Meanwhile on Wednesday, a group of Rio Tinto Alcan employees fromnorthern Quebec locked out by the Montreal-headquartered,aluminum-producing company several months ago, protested outsidethe Quebec City Convention Centre where the SportAccordinternational conference is being held. The United Steelworkers, the union that represents the workers,said it chose the venue because Rio Tinto is the official supplierof the metal used to produce the 4,700 Olympics medals for theLondon 2012 Games. Canada has hosted three Olympics Games: one Summer Games inMontreal in 1976, and two Winter Games in Calgary in 1988 and twoyears ago in Vancouver. Next year's SportAccord Convention will be held in SaintPetersburg, Russia, from May 26 to 31.
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