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Peace and Sport Regional Forum was successfully held in the island of Rhodes in collaboration with the Region Of South Aegean

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Peace and Sport Regional Forum was successfully held in the island of Rhodes in collaboration with the Region Of South Aegean

Peace and Sport Regional Forum was successfully held this 18 October, in the iconic island of Rhodes by the international organisation Peace and Sport and the Region of South Aegean.

Entitled "Societies in Motion: Rising up through Sport", the Regional Forum gathered 350 decision-makers from 50 countries, 50 high-level speakers, 22 award nominees and 10 Champions for Peace, to demonstrate the positive impact of sport in societies. 

Along the day, high-profile participants from across the Mediterranean region, including regional actors, Nobel Peace Prize Laureates, sports governing bodies, high-level athletes, international organisations, NGOs, academia and Champions for Peace identified regional challenges and built synergies to maximise the use of sport for positive change.

The event began with three plenary sessions that saw prestigious advocates from the peace-through-sport movement coming to discuss about domestic and international initiatives taking place in the Mediterranean.

On the first session, Ouided Bouchamaoui, 2015 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet member made a memorable speech and described how sport can create peaceful communities, networks and regional cooperation. She spoke alongside basketball player Lazaros Papadopoulos, the cofounder of The Good Country, Madeline Hung and Alex Canals, regional representative of FC Barcelona Foundation.

On the second session, the subject of cities as a hub of innovation and social inclusion was highlighted by great speakers. Among them, Petros Kokkalis, President of Hope Refugee FC, Athena Zerva, Head coach Greek National Deaf Women’s basketball team, Rimla Akhtar, Chair of the Muslim Women’s Sport Foundation, and Kashif Siddiqi Founder of Football for Peace and Champion for Peace.

The last morning session featured three great champions: Mike Seitis, paralympic and World Record holder 400m, Mihalis Kakiouzis, Ex-Captain of Greece National Basketball team and Eleven Campaign Ambassador and Christian Karembeu, FIFA World Champion and Champion for Peace. Based on their personal stories, they presented tangible examples on how we can invest in human capital for social and economic development.

A Decision Making Rountable gathered nine sport ministries from the regional and four high authorities from the sporting world including Hellenic Olympic Committee, the Jordan Basketball Federation and FITEQ.

Earlier in the afternoon, a diplomatic event took place at the Ancient Stadium of Rhodes, a mythical sports venue. Among the numerous highlights, a moment of diplomatic unity around a Teqball match featured four international football players: French football star and Champion for Peace Christian Karembeu, Greek footballer Giorgos Karagounis, 2004 UEFA European Champion, Turkish Hamza Hamzaoglou and Cypriot Charalambos Andreou. This match was a perfect example of the power of cooperation and peace between countries through sport.  

Late in the evening, the basketball legend Nikos Galis elaborated on the role of sport inspiring new generations, explained the ways sport can be used for social change and shared his personal story, leading by his example.

Commenting on the selection of Rhodes as the location of this year’s Peace and Sport Regional Forum, George Hatzimarkos, Governor of the region of South Aegean, highlighted: “The trust and confidence that the international community has shown in the organisation of this Forum, does not reflect only upon us but on our country as well. The high-profile representatives that came together at the island of Rhodes demonstrated that nothing great can ever occur by standing still. Great victories come by taking action and by moving forward - only the greatest of people have the ability to establish great societies”. 


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Peace and Sport


Friday, October 19, 2018 - 09:06

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