Austrian President opens 75th congress, as AIPS presents Fair Play awardees
INNSBRUCK, January 13, 2012 - The 75th Anniversary congress of the AIPS in Innsbruck, was officially opened by Austrian President Dr Heinz Fischer on Friday, who also graced the Fair Play and Power of Sport Awarding ceremony.
President Fischer lauded the organisers' choice to host the Congress in Innsbruck that is also playing host to the first ever Winter Youth Olympic games which kicked off Friday.
"It is pleasing to grace a congress with such a high tradition and rich history as it shows that the idea to form AIPS 75 years proved to be constructive and useful."
It was indeed a special congress honoured with the presence of H.S.H Prince Albert II of Monaco and H.S.H Prince Feisal Al Hussein of Jordan who received their Power of Sport Awards for their champion of the cause of peace and social development through sport.
"The conviction I want to share with you today is this: It is our responsibility and duty, as government, media and as individuals is to encourage the use of sport for peace-building purposes and make a greater contribution to improving the world in which we live," said Prince Albert the Patron of "Peace and Sport.
"Am grateful to AIPS for the recognition of the work at Generations for Peace which basically aims to empower youth through Sport, "Prince Feisal noted in his acceptance speech to delegates from 104 countries.
The other laureate of the Power of Sport was Italian Paralympic athlete and charity patron Fabrizio Macchi, who is now focussed on 'winning an Olympic Gold medal.'
Barcelona FC rounded up what has been a superb week for the Cataluña side as they received the Fair play trophy awarded to its youth team for their act of fair play in a local derby.
"Its been a special week for us which began in Zurich on Monday, "noted Barcelona Vice President Charles Villarubi i Carrio who received the trophy.
The triumphant Kenya women's marathon team from Daegu who displayed outstanding team spirit were recognised with World Silver medallist Prisca Jeptoo receiving the award on behalf of her compatriots.
"This award will go along way to motivate us as we prepare for the London Olympics."
Patrice Tondela, former French football referee's heroic decision to stop a match following racists slurs also earned him a Fair Play trophy while Indian Cricket Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who is currently with his team in Australia, was rewarded for his decision to recall England batsman Ian Bell following a contentious run out.
The Fair Play Trophies were provided by Swarovski.