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Winter Olympics in Sochi aim to show new, open Russia to world

February 24, 2014, 12:26 UTC+3 SOCHI
Russian athletes “have proved that we have strong traditions, and our country still brings up bright and strong athletes, who can surprise and delight the world", President Putin said
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Russian President Vladimir Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin

© ITAR-TASS/Alexei Druzhinin

SOCHI, February 24. /ITAR-TASS/. The Winter Olympic Games in Sochi aimed to demonstrate new, many-sided and open Russia to the world, President Vladimir Putin told at a meeting with members of the national team.

“But the main thing is to show the elite of the national sport, those who carry the banner of its glorious and great traditions with dignity,” he said.

Russian athletes “have proved that we have strong traditions, and our country still brings up bright and strong athletes, who can surprise and delight the world, bring joy to people and make hearts of millions of our citizens beat in unison, filling them with pride for the Motherland,” Putin said.

Putin congratulated gold winners and medalists of the 22nd Winter Olympic Games on successful and triumphant performance at the most prestigious competition in the last four years.

“The whole country, millions of our citizens say a great, cordial thanks to you!” the president said, noting that Russian Olympic team had topped unofficial team standings.

Russia has won 13 gold medals, 11 silver medals and 9 bronze medals.

Russia to hold international competitions

Russia is ready to host different international competitions in Sochi, President Vladimir Putin said on Monday.

“I want everything that was built, done and erected here [in Sochi], in terms of architecture, infrastructure, engineering structures and transport, to be further used,” Putin said at an official breakfast with representative of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

“I am grateful for thinking about it and for proposing different options. I remember that recently you have insisted on developing a positive dialogue with international sports orgznizations,” the Russian president told International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach.

Putin said Bach spoke about the need to step up the work with the IOC in order to hold international competitions in Russia.

“We will be glad to organize international competitions. We proved that we can be hospitable. We tried to do our best to make a grandiose holiday. Comfortable conditions were created for athletes, specialists, coaches and journalists to work and compete,” Putin said.

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