Ilham Aliyev: “Azerbaijan is recognized as a sports nation in the world”

805 medals, including 275 gold were won in international competitions, world and European championships

“This great tradition exists for several years, and I’m sure it will live in the future. I remember, in 1997 when I was elected the President of the National Olympic Committee, I said that the Azerbaijani government and National Olympic Committee will take care of the athletes, but we expect victories form athletes”, said President Ilham Aliyev at the ceremony to award sportsmen and specialists in accordance with results of 2014.

The Head of the State noted that this policy was successful. “Thanks to this policy today Azerbaijan is recognized as a sports nation in the world. All sports structures work actively. National Olympic Committee, Ministry of Youth and Sports, federations, societies, clubs, shortly sport in Azerbaijan is developing successfully and high-level State policy is run in this direction. Thanks to this policy today, our athletes make us happy with their victories and sports infrastructure is established in Azerbaijan. Once again I want to say that Azerbaijan has already been highly appreciated for sporting achievements in the world.”

According to the President, 2014 was a successful year for the economy in general. “Despite all the difficulties existing in the region and the world crisis, Azerbaijan is developing steadily. All the tasks set by us earlier in the year, have been implemented, and we conclude 2014 with good results. Year after year, our athletes win more medals. This year is no exception. 805 medals, including 275 gold were won in international competitions, world and European championships. In comparison with last year, the number of medals increased again. The number of medals, of course, makes us happy. Since this is the main indicator of the development of sport.

During the year several prestigious international competitions have been held in Azerbaijan. Two of them are European Championships – Rhythmic gymnastics and taekwondo. Every year Azerbaijan hosts international competitions.

Continuation of our success, of course, will be provided.” President Ilham Aliyev noted China Youth Summer Olympic Games as clear evidence for this: “These Games were historical for us. Since at these Games, our athletes have won the greatest and I can say a historic victory. The games involved in 204 countries and Azerbaijani boys and girls won the 10th place as the team. This is a great historical achievement. To take the 10th place in the world is a great success. To repeat this success will be difficult in the future. But we must strive to do it.