A ceremony of presenting gifts to refugee sportsmen took place in the Olympic town

On September 22, 2017, at the Government meeting, President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov instructed on behalf of the National Olympic Committee to reward the members of the refugee team with honorary awards and gifts for their active participation in the V Asian Indoor Games and Martial Arts, emphasizing that this step is the first practical implementation of the Declaration "On Encouragement of Valuable Contribution of the Refugees Olympic Teams to Consolidation of Peace and Human Rights", adopted on our initiative at the 36th session of the UN Council on human rights.

In the evening, solemn ceremony of presentation of valuable gifts took place in the Olympic town. The leadership of the Executive Committee of the 5th Asian Games, representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan, the State Sports Committee, coaches and members of the national teams of Turkmenistan and foreign countries, representatives of domestic and foreign mass media took part in the ceremony.

The action took place on the square of the Olympic town to the sound of music and songs in the presence of hundreds of guests, among them participants of the Games "Ashkhabad 2017". The event became a colorful show, at which representatives of different cultures united to achieve a noble goal - the advancement of the ideas of humanism to the masses.

 As noted in the speech of the representative of the Turkmen side, the main direction of the foreign policy of the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov is cooperation with international organizations, a special place among which is cooperation with international humanitarian structures. The fact that Turkmenistan initiated the adoption of this particularly important Declaration at the level of the United Nations has once again vividly demonstrated to the world community the ever-increasing role of our country in addressing global humanitarian issues of our time. The honorary awards awarded today are our gratitude for the valuable contribution of the Olympic teams of refugees that they contribute to the consolidation of peace and human rights.

In response, head of the refugee camp Tegla Lorupe wholeheartedly thanked the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov for the opportunity to participate in the 5th Asian Games and the Declaration on the Promotion of the Valuable Contribution of the Olympic Teams of Refugees to the Promotion of Peace and Human Rights initiated by the Turkmen leader. According to the legendary marathon, the initiative of the Turkmen leader will give a new impetus to the solution of the problems of refugees and stateless persons, since sports, based on respect and high principles of humanism, contribute to the strengthening of peace and mutual understanding.

"Anyone can be a refugee," Tegla says. - Our participation in the V Asian Games proves that as refugees, we can also be part of the movement of these Games. Participating in these competitions, we want to convey the idea that refugees are also people and have the same right to take part in such international competitions.

 As the Turkmen leader emphasized during the solemn opening ceremony of the Games "Ashgabat 2017", everyone must have the right to participate in international competitions, including those who, due to circumstances, lost the opportunity to act under the flag of their native country.

In this regard, one of the main objectives of the Declaration "On Encouragement of Valuable Contribution of the Refugees Olympic Teams to Consolidation Peace and Human Rights" is to draw public attention to the problems of refugees and to prove the possibility of resolving crisis situations peacefully by a positive example.

 World sport as one of the pillars of interstate cooperation and mutual understanding gives refugees the opportunity not only to show their sports skills with dignity, but also to use the sports ground as a platform for a political speech calling for peace in their native land.