Baku, June 17, AZERTAC
President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has issued an order to award President of the European Olympic Committees Patrick Hickey with “Sharaf” Order.
The head of state presented the high Order to Patrick Hickey.
President Ilham Aliyev said:
- Mr President, first of all I want to congratulate you on your jubilee. I am very glad that you are celebrating your birthday in Baku, the capital of a very close country to you, I am sure. I take this opportunity to thank you for the work being carried out in the name of sport and the Olympic movement in Europe.
As a member of the European Olympic family for nearly 20 years, I am well aware of your commitment to the development of sport on our continent, your selfless work and dedication. I remember a time when we were together involved in the meetings of the European Olympic Committee. Unfortunately, due to my current work I can’t participate in the meetings, but I watch your activities very closely. I want to congratulate you on the great success achieved in the promotion of European sport in the world.
Of course, the decision to organize the First European Games supported by the European Olympic family was historic. We are proud to hold the First Games in Baku. This allows us the opportunity to introduce our country, demonstrate our capabilities and organize a major event. We see that the public has a great interest in this event. I am confident that at the end of the Games we will witness growing interest of thousands of people, especially children, in sport and becoming champions. It will play a very positive role in the future development of sport in Azerbaijan.
In view of the great achievements in the development of sports and Olympic movement in Europe and Azerbaijan, I have signed a decree to decorate you with one of the highest awards of Azerbaijan, the "Sharaf" Order, and I present it to you.
President Ilham Aliyev presented the "Sharaf" Order to Patrick Hickey.
President of the European Olympic Committees Patrick Hickey said:
- Mr. President, it is a great honor for me. Thank you for this high award. We have come a long way together. I personally have known you for many years. Now I have the opportunity to learn more about Azerbaijan and its people. It feels like a second home. I feel great here and enjoy this respect. From all over Europe I am receiving feedback on the organization of the Games, the venues and the hospitality. So far I have not received any complaints about anything, whether it is transportation, meals or other issues.
Patrick Hickey congratulated President Ilham Aliyev and our people on the great successes achieved by Azerbaijani sportsmen in the early days of the First European Games.