|UN Secretary General Kofi Annan launching the 2005 as Year of Sport|
NEW YORK, 5 November 2004 - Today in a press conference at the United Nations, the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan announced that the UN General Assembly has designated 2005 as the International Year of Sport and Physical Education and unveiled plans for a year-long push to highlight the power of sport to bridge cultural and ethnic divides and improve people’s lives.
The Secretary-General was surrounded by several leading sports figures -- UNICEF Special Representative for Sports Johann Olav Koss, Roger Federer of Switzerland, the world’s No 1 tennis player, and Margaret Okayo of Kenya, New York City Marathon Defending Champion. Adolf Ogi, Special Adviser to the Secretary-General on Sport for Development and Peace and Former President of Switzerland and Executive Deputy Director for UNICEF, Kul Gautam were also on hand.
In October, the General Assembly adopted a resolution emphasizing the potential of sport to achieve development objectives and called for a global partnership using sports as a tool for development and peace, focusing on 2005. The United Nations has long acknowledged the importance of sports in society and has established strong ties to the sports world.
Sport is important priority for UNICEF. The organisation is now incorporating the power and potential of sport, recreation and play into its work in countries around the world. UNICEF will mark the launch of the International Year of Sport by launching a new web resource for sports for development.