Serbian athletes won six medals at the Paralympic Games held in Tokyo. A record 4,403 athletes from more than 160 countries took part in the games, competing in 22 sports and 539 disciplines. Serbia was represented by 19 athletes, for whom a reception was organised in the Assembly of the City of Belgrade.
“I don’t think there is a better way to start my term than at the Paralympic reception event. The EU Delegation is proud of your results and that we were able to be part of your success. We need to learn a lesson from you, that when you have a strong enough will, you can achieve great results,” said the new Head of the European Union Delegation to the Republic of Serbia, Ambassador Emanuele Giaufret.
“As you know, we jointly promoted a campaign called ‘And what is your superpower?’ I am convinced that many people, watching the campaign, started looking for their superpowers. We will continue to be with you, and to be a proud partner of the Paralympic Committee of Serbia, and I wish you luck in the next successes,“ said Ambassador Giaufret.
Serbian athletes won two gold, three silver and one bronze medal. In the overall ranking, Serbia took 45th place.
“It is a great honour and pleasure to have you today in the Old Palace, and a special honour for me to say thank you on behalf of the people of Belgrade and on my own behalf for everything you have done at these games and everything you do for our sport. You are an example of how much a person with a strong character and strong desire and will shows the true values that people have. I am personally proud of you, and I am sure of the whole of Belgrade and the whole of Serbia,” said the mayor of Belgrade, Zoran Radojicic, at the reception.
This was the fourth participation of Serbia in the Paralympic Games, and the second best achievement in terms of the number of medals.
“I want to thank the sponsors and all the people who helped us. Our role was to make all the competitors fight to the maximum and to prepare before that. The hosts did everything to make the games go as they should, but the fact is that it was an unusual competition. Our role as an alliance is leading in the inclusion of a large number of inhabitants. All these people in the Paralympics look at us as someone who will open the windows for their inclusion in social life. Thank you for this nice welcome and I hope that we will and that we will bring medals from the next competitions,” said the President of the Paralympic Committee, Zoran Mićović.
The most successful competitor from Serbia, Dragan Ristic, won two gold medals in shooting. “Thank you for the nice reception and welcome. I would like to congratulate my colleagues on their great fighting spirit and the medals they won. I would like to thank everyone who helped us and I hope that we will return from Paris with even more medals,“ said Ristic.
“I would like to congratulate POCS on its efforts to prepare our athletes. I would also like to take this opportunity to welcome the new Ambassador of the European Union and to thank the EU Delegation who wholeheartedly helped POKS and their departure to Tokyo. I think you did the right thing, that with your help, our Paralympians showed their super powers. Congratulations to all the medal winners and all the athletes who were in Tokyo,“ said Darko Udovicic, Assistant Minister of Youth and Sports.
The Delegation of the European Union to Serbia is a proud partner of the Serbian Paralympic team. The EU delegations supported the Paralympic team by covering the costs of transporting athletes, their coaches and staff to Tokyo and supporting the Serbian Paralympic Committee in performing its duties and promoting sports for all in Serbia.
The full economic and social participation of people with disabilities is crucial if success is to be achieved in achieving smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. The European Union’s support for the social inclusion of people with disabilities is worth almost 62 million euros, from 2008 until today. Funds intended for the social inclusion sector are used to improve the social protection system, increase the employment rate, combat discrimination in employment and care for groups that are less present in the labor market.
Source: europa.rs, Photo: europa.rs