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Meet the Determined
Special Olympics for athletes with intellectual disabilities kicks off in Abu Dhabi
By Yu Lintao  ·  2019-03-15  ·   Source: Web Exclusive

 

A bird view of the opening ceremony in Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, on March 14 (COURTESY PHOTO)

Overcoming their intellectual disabilities, more than 7,500 athletes will show their metier at the Special Olympics World Games 2019 that kicked off with a spectacular opening ceremony in Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), on March 14.

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, officially welcomed the attendees from 200 countries and regions, with the Middle East hosting the seven-day event for the first time since it started in 1968.

The event has seen growing participation by women. More than 2,500 women will be carrying their nations’ flags and almost half of them taking part in the competitions.

A delegation of 110 Chinese athletes is competing in 10 sports, including swimming, football, basketball, table tennis and gymnastics. This is the ninth time that China has sent a team to the Special Olympics World Summer Games.

“As we kick off the World Games, we can celebrate the fact that our movement has made progress in the 50 years since the Special Olympics was founded,” Mary Davis, CEO of Special Olympics International, said. “This is a movement by people of determination for people of determination and for everyone else.”

Copyedited by Sudeshna Sarkar

Comments to yulintao@bjreview.com

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