ISSF World Shooting Championships kick off in Baku [PHOTOS]
The 53rd ISSF World Shooting Championships has started in Baku. Around 1, 239 shooters from 101 countries are taking part in the championships.
The opening ceremony was held at Baku Crystal Hall, Azernews reports. The parade of flags of participating countries was held as part of the ceremony. Next, the audience enjoyed a video on Azerbaijan's cultural heritage.
After that, the Azerbaijani flag was brought to the scene, and the state anthem was played. Following it, the flag of International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) was brought to the scene, and the anthem of the Federation was played.
Azerbaijan Minister of Youth and Sport Farid Gayibov welcomed the guests of the ceremony.
In his speech, the minister stressed that the World Shooting Championship reminded that 2023 has been declared the Year of Heydar Aliyev in Azerbaijan.
"On this occasion, various large-scale events and competitions are held by our federations. It is no coincidence that the World Shooting Championship was held for the first time in Azerbaijan in the year when we celebrated the 100th anniversary of Heydar Aliyev. The National Leader has always paid special attention to sports and has not spared his support for athletes," said Farid Gayibov.
In his speech, the minister noted that Azerbaijan has great experience in holding large-scale events.
"Azerbaijan has great experience in holding large-scale events and competitions. It is impossible to hold all these events without the support of the state. In Azerbaijan, sport is a state policy. This state policy was determined by the head of the country, President Ilham Aliyev. As a result of the tasks given by him, the joint work of various state institutions and federations, Azerbaijan is achieving high results in the field of sports. On behalf of our country, I would like to express my deep gratitude to the International Shooting Sports Federation for believing in Azerbaijan and entrusting the championship to us, as well as to everyone who contributed to the organization of the competition. I wish success to all athletes," he concluded.
Speaking at the ceremony, President of the International Shooting Sport Federation Luciano Rossi emphasized that Azerbaijan hosts a number of international competitions.
"As a result of President Ilham Aliyev's visionary policy and commitment to sports, Baku has hosted a number of world-class sport competitions since the first European Games. We also express our gratitude to the First Lady of Azerbaijan, Mehriban Aliyeva, who greatly contributes to the development of various sports in Azerbaijan. The Olympic Games in Paris are only one year away. The 53rd ISSF World Shooting Championships gives way to the Paris 2024 Summer Olympics," he said.
After that, the swearing-in ceremony of athletes, coaches and judges took place. The ceremony was followed by a spectacular show.
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