The President of the International Boxing Association (AIBA), Dr Ching-Kuo Wu attended this Monday 29 November the International Sport Cooperation Conference in Seoul, South Korea.
In front of the President of the International Sport Cooperation Center of Korea, the Korean Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the President of the Korean Olympic Committee and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Vice-president, Mr Ser Miang Ng, Dr Wu delivered a speech on the International Sport Federations and the International Cooperation through sport.
"In recent years, the international sport community has increasingly recognized the power of sport as a means of resolving and/or enhancing social issues in certain regions and countries.
"Sport plays a vital role for human health. However, sport, as a universal language, has also been a powerful medium for social and economic change, can be utilized to bridge cultural gaps, may resolve conflicts and educate people for the betterment of our lives.
"This is the reason why IFs use these effective characteristic of sport to communicate with people from various backgrounds, nationalities or beliefs, and to promote expression beyond traditional barriers as well as to develop their own sport worldwide this being the core element of International Cooperation.
"Nevertheless, more importantly, the success of the development of sport also crucially relies on the success of positioning sport along with the International Cooperation concept in certain selected countries well understanding the role of sport.
"In this regard, very fortunately, the United Nations have promoted sport as a cost-effective tool to accelerate the achievement of its Millennium Development Goals and to promote peace.
"Their efforts have proved that a systematic and coherent use of sport can make an important contribution to public health, universal education, gender equality, poverty reduction, prevention of HIV, AIDS and other diseases, environmental sustainability as well as peace-building and conflict resolution.
"Therefore, since the International Year of Sport and Physical Education 2005, United Nations Member Countries have increasingly recognized in their respective national legislation and strategies the role of sport in dealing with numerous domestic foreign policy challenges.
"As a result, the number of governments and social entities being interested in forming a joint effort with IFs to develop their own specific International Cooperation programs has increased. IFs are very happy of these efforts as these will assist IFs in enhancing their sport development programs.
"I have recently been elected as a member of the IOC Executive Board as the Representative of the Association of the 28 Summer Olympic International Federations, ASOIF. Thus, I would like to recommend the following to ASOIF, United Nations and IOC on how IFs and IOC could work together to promote the merits of International Cooperation through sport.
"First of all, we all need to concentrate on developing young leaders in our sport organizations, leaders who will have an in-depth understanding of the impact of International Cooperation. Some IFs have already fulfilled this need by offering education programs to young sport leaders from around the world.
"I truly believe that the future of our sports and organizations belongs to the young generation. All these initiatives from IFs may only be successful if IFs ensure the education of many young leaders with a mindset based on humanism and on the principles of the Olympic Movement.
"I would like to take FIFA and AIBA as examples in this regard.
"Endorsed by FIFA and organized by the International Centre for Sport Studies (CIES), the FIFA Master was created to promote management education within the sport world. It has developed to become a top graduate program forming all-round managers who can cope with the increasingly complex world of sport.
"The FIFA Master course focuses on three key and inter-related aspects of sport: humanities, management and law and offers a dynamic international environment with around 20 different nationalities represented in a class of approximately 30 postgraduates being selected each year.
"At AIBA, an AIBA Boxing Academy is being established. This initiative was designed to create a special development vehicle to promote Boxing by bringing together the best people and the best opportunities to develop the sport.
"With the concept of establishing a center of excellence for all National Federations affiliated to AIBA, this project will provide state-of-the-art training facilities and education programs not only for the development of young boxers but also for young coaches, referees and judges, ringside doctors, future sports managers and administrators. At the Academy, one of the most important curricula will be to underline the impact of sport in our society as one of the tools for solving social issues.
"Secondly, all of IFs' efforts and interests for International Cooperation will be greatly boosted and broadened in certain countries and regions once the IOC, IFs and United Nations work together to achieve specific common goals.
"As clearly outlined in the Charter of the United Nations, International Cooperation has the purpose of "promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion."
"This purpose is also a pursuit of IOC as stated in the Fundamental Principles of Olympism as "The practice of sport is a human right. Every individual must have the possibility of practicing sport, without discrimination of any kind and in the Olympic spirit."
"Any form of discrimination with regard to a country or a person on grounds of race, religion, politics, gender or otherwise is incompatible with belonging to the Olympic Movement."
"Therefore, in essence, both United Nations and IOC are placing discrimination of any form as intolerable and incompatible. In the world of sport, the freedom of practicing sport and participating to competitions is a fundamental value to adhere to.
"All IFs have clearly shared these principles in their Statutes and/or Constitutions. The reality is how to pursue these programs with the right people, sufficient funds and common objectives among all of us.
"People appreciate sports having as merit some ideas to resolve the young generation's social problems, issues on racism, issues on health for the general population, and promoting the fight against any disease and social violence.
"As one of the leaders of an International Federation, I would like to urge all IFs to also work together in sharing sources to invest in more International Cooperation programs.
"I am very impressed by the initiative and intention of ISCC to develop some International Cooperation programs through sport in Korea. I sincerely hope that the messages of ISCC can reach all IFs in order to find joint programs.
"I also promise to all of you that I would volunteer to form a synergy center of International Cooperation among IFs, United Nations and IOC in the near future."
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