Paralympic Games
06 - 17 September

Closing Ceremony Speech of IPC President

17 Sep 2008 By IPC

Zun Jìng de Hú Jíntao zhu xí jí Fu Rén (Your Excellency Hu Jintao, Madame Hu Jintao)

Athletes, Officials, Distinguished Guests,

Paralympic Sports fans from all over the world,

Wan Shàng háo Huàn Yíng Ni men (Good Evening and Welcome).

2500 years ago Confucius said:

“You Peng Zi Yuan Fang Lai, Bu Yi Yue Hu?” (“That friends should come to one for afar, is that not after all delightful?”). On behalf of all members of the Paralympic Family may I take the liberty to paraphrase the Good man’s great words. “It is equally delightful to come from afar and make new friends here in China”.

We have to give a big thank you to BOCOG and its President, Liu Qi, the athletes, the fantastic volunteers, the officials and staff of the IPC, IFs and NPCs, the 5,500 media who have covered the Games and, in particular Manolo Romero and his team for the television images, the sponsors and last but certainly not least you, the inspirational spectators.

What a great Paralympic Games this has been.

An ethereal Opening Ceremony, staggering athletic performances in perfect stadia, the best ever Paralympic Villages, amazing high definition television coverage, a never ending and self generating supply of passion and emotion, superb organization, wonderful volunteers, millions of new Paralympic sports aficionados both here in China and around the world.

These are the greatest Paralympic Games ever.

It is all about spirit. The Paralympic spirit that is ever bright in our movement, found here in China, a kindred spirit. It reached out to you, you embraced it and it is now cherished in your hearts. Now these spirits are united, “One World”, “One Dream” and “One People” has become a reality.

All athletes, coaches and officials should take the unique sporting spirit from these Games to the four corners of this planet, Earth. There, encourage new athletes, make new friends and inspire them to light the flame in their hearts.

Finally the time has come for me to declare the XIII Paralympic Games closed

I call upon Paralympic athletes from all over the world to meet in London in four years time when once again you will inspire and excite the world with your sporting excellence.

Xiè Xie Xiang Gang, (Thank you Hong Kong), Xiè Xie Qingdao, (Thank you Qingdao), Xiè Xie Beijing (Thank you Beijing), Xiè Xie Zhong guo (Thank you China)

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