Baku hosts CoE sports ministers meeting

BAKU – The 18th Council of Europe Informal Conference of Ministers responsible for Sport was held in Baku on Wednesday.

The event brought together ministers and officials from 35 countries, as well as Director General of Education, Culture and Heritage, Youth and Sport of the Council of Europe Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni, and President of the European Olympic Committee Patrick Hickey.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Azerbaijani Deputy Prime Minister Elchin Efendiyev highlighted Azerbaijan’s achievements in the field of sport.

Efendiyev said: "The election of President Ilham Aliyev as the head of the National Olympic Committee marked a new era in Azerbaijan’s sports."

He praised the importance President Aliyev attaches to developing sports in the country.

"Some 27 Olympic Sports Complexes have been built across the country over the last few years."

"Azerbaijan enjoys close relations with the Council of Europe countries in the sports area. I’m sure the conference will contribute to strengthening sports cooperation among the European countries."

Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe Maud de Boer-Buquicchio congratulated participants of the event through a video message.

The meeting discussed promotion of the integrity of sport against manipulations of the results. One of its sub-themes was dedicated to the granting of visas to athletes.