Badung, Bali (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) invited President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Thomas Bach to deliver his statement at the luncheon on the first day of the G20 Summit.

"Now, I would like to invite Mr Thomas Bach to deliver his speech," Jokowi said while inviting Bach to speak during the banquet here Tuesday.

Apart from Bach, the president also invited FIFA President Gianni Infantino to deliver a speech at the assembly.

In his remarks, Bach said that Indonesia's G20 Presidency theme "Recover Together, Recover Stronger" resonated with the motto of the Olympic Games "Faster, Higher, Stronger - Together."

He noted that the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the importance of sports for physical and mental health that could save lives.

"This is why the International Olympic Committee is working closely with the World Health Organization to promote a healthy and resilient society through sports," the IOC president said.

Bach pointed out that Olympic athletes were role models to realize a healthy life for people in society. He also lauded strong coordination with the Japanese and Chinese authorities as well as close partnership with the WHO to realize safe and successful Olympics and Paralympics despite the pandemic.

"We can only bring the world together if the athletes from all 206 national Olympic committees could participate in the Olympic Games. This is what the Olympics and the Paralympic Games are about: The whole world together in peaceful competitions without discrimination whatsoever," he emphasized.

While past challenges in Olympic Games were caused by the pandemic, the current challenges arose due to international conflicts causing countries to politicize the competition, Bach remarked.

He also said that the IOC needs participation from all athletes in the Olympics with no discrimination, including against athletes of conflicting countries, as sports ought to realize world peace and unity and heal division.

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Translator: Rangga Pandu AJ, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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