Abu Dhabi, MINA – Special Olympics World Games for Arab and African countries was opened at Zayed Sports City Stadium, Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, Thursday night, March 14.
This is the first time of Special Olympics held in the Middle East and North Africa in 50 years of history. Saudi Gazette reported.
A total of 7,500 athletes from 19 countries participated in the traditional opening ceremony, and raised their country’s flags.
The Saudi team for the first time included female athletes.
Various sports are contested, including basketball, swimming, table tennis, and bowling.
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed, crown prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, in his remarks officially opened the Olympics.
“We welcome all of you in your second country. With all our pride, we are honored to host this Special Olympics and we are proud to have all the athletes here from all over the world. Today with the presence and effort, we send a message that nothing is impossible when you determine, “he said.
The committee prepared 1,500 officials and officers as well as 20,000 volunteers to ensure the week-long program went well. (T/Sj/P2)
Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)