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SBD Global/June 25, 2013/OlympicsPrint All
The IOC evaluation commission will share its report on visits it has made to Madrid, Tokyo and Istanbul Tuesday at 11am local time, according to Jesús Mínguez of AS. The conclusions of the group led by Craig Reedie "are not binding, and there will not be grades, nor will the city in the best standing be guaranteed election." A negative evaluation, however, "can burden a candidate." This occurred with Madrid's 2016 bid, when doubts about the anti-doping legislation in place hurt the city's bid. Spanish Olympic Committee (COE) President Alejandro Blanco said, "We are hopeful and eager because we have adapted the project to the reality of the world, and the evaluation commission reflected this in March." In his last press conference, Reedie said that "the Games cannot be more expensive every time." Blanco: "The remaining investment is small (€1.7M ($2.2M)), Spain is a model country in terms of results and the organization of athletic events and we support an intelligent concept oriented around not wasting what already is in place" (AS, 6/24).
A sporting event seven years from now may not be the priority for a country in the midst of its biggest political crisis in years, "yet while the protests in Istanbul have rocked the country and sent shockwaves across the world, Turkey remains focused on securing the 2020 Olympics," according to James Riach of the London GUARDIAN. A youthful and vibrant population (50% of Turkey's 76 million inhabitants are under 25) "was regarded as one of the bid's key strengths." However, the police's handling of the recent protests in Taksim Square that began following a peaceful demonstration against the pending redevelopment of neighboring Gezi Park "has caused widespread condemnation." Approximately 5,000 people "have been injured during the protests and at least four have died." The IOC must decide whether Istanbul is now a risky option, "despite the bid's clear strengths." Avoiding controversy "is a key factor for the IOC." The organization said that "with every infrastructural problem ahead of the Rio 2016 Games, Tokyo's chances increased" (GUARDIAN, 6/24).
The Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) has signed an agreement with the Sochi 2014 Olympic Torch Relay to transport the Olympic torch to the Int'l Space Station and out into space. The agreement was signed by Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee President Dmitry Chernyshenko, and the Roscosmos General Dir Vladimir Popovkin (Sochi 2014). ... Tokyo 2020 has appointed int'l TV personality Christel Takigawa as "Cool Tokyo" ambassador (Tokyo 2020).