By Amina Nazarli
Our successes are based on the love to the Motherland, and this is the main factor of the victories of our athletes.
President Ilham Aliyev made the remark at a meeting held with the Azerbaijani athletes, who won the 4th Islamic Solidarity Games, their coaches, and representatives of Azerbaijan`s sports community.
First Lady, Chairperson of the 4th Islamic Solidarity Games Organizing Committee Mehriban Aliyeva and family members also attended the ceremony.
"We saw how happy the athletes are, how happy our people are. During these ten days we once again saw that our people and society are united. We are united by our ideas, our history and our vision for the future. Today, Azerbaijan is a country that deserves a lot of respect on a global scale. Azerbaijan is a country that deserves a very big sympathy in the Muslim world," the President said.
President Aliyev noted that Azerbaijan showed a new approach and applied new standards at the Islamic Solidarity Games.
“This is a sign of our respect for the guests and a manifestation of responsibility. At the same time, it generally shows our policy, since we want all events in Azerbaijan to be held at the highest level. Therefore, our country is developing, that's why all foreign guests who arrived in Baku admire our city,” he said.
President Aliyev went on saying that the Organizing Committee of the Games under the leadership of Mehriban Aliyeva did very great job.
“The Organizing Committee made all the necessary arrangements to the smallest detail in order to create good conditions for both athletes and guests,” he said.
The head of state emphasized that “we are committed to our national and religious values. We protect and will further protect them.”
At the same time, President Aliyev noted, that Azerbaijan is open to the world, “we are modern, we are developing, and these important factors really represent the modern Azerbaijani state today.”
"We are building a modern state on deep national and spiritual roots, the state that every patriotic person is now proud of," he added.
The President said the country made an additional contribution to its policy through sport.
“On the eve of the 4th Islamic Solidarity Games I said that our main goal is to ensure that athletes, guests representing Muslim countries come together in Baku, get to know each other, shake hands and strengthen friendship, cooperation. And we achieved this. We saw this at the Games. On some occasions, representatives of countries that are not so close from a political point of view were congratulating each other, were happy for each other`s success, and were shaking each other`s hands,” he said.
The head of state said Azerbaijan's policy with respect to the Muslim world aims to strengthen unity, solidarity, and to end some confrontations, wars among Muslim countries.
More than 3,000 athletes representing 54 countries competed for 269 sets of medals at the 4th Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku.
Azerbaijan took the lead in medal standings at the Games. The national athletes won 75 gold, 50 silver and 37 bronze medals.
Amina Nazarli is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @amina_nazarli
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