The Wall, which has been a fixture in the Olympic Villages since Sydney 2000, forms the backdrop for the Team Welcome Ceremonies and provides a place of reflection and inspiration of peace through sport. The wall features images and statements from St John’s Roman Catholic Comprehensive school in Gravesend, Kent, which reflects what the idea of the Olympic Truce meant to them.
Amy, aged 16 from St John’s school said “It’s so exciting to have a chance to be involved in a piece of history and show how the Olympic Games bring the World together”.
Continuing the tradition from past Games, athletes and officials were yesterday invited to sign the Wall as a symbol of their support. Approximately 10,500 athletes from 204 National Olympic Committees (NOCs) are in London to compete. Following the Games, the British Olympic Association will display the Wall at the British Olympic Museum in the Olympic Park.
At yesterday’s Ceremony President Rogge said “Sport is not immune from, and cannot cure all the ills of the world. But sport can help bridge differences and bring people together. We can see proof of that at these Games.”
At yesterday’s unveiling, tribute was also paid to the victims of the attacks during the 1972 Munich Games. President Rogge said “The 11 victims of the Munich tragedy ... came to Munich in the spirit of peace and solidarity. We owe it to them to keep that spirit alive and to remember them”.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: "In ancient Greece the Olympic truce would see arms laid aside across the lands to ensure safe passage for athletes and spectators. Now in 2012, the Truce Wall here in London's Olympic Park allows us to record for posterity a shared commitment to the ideals excellence, respect and friendship. I hope the gathering of the many nations who have travelled to the Olympic Village this summer and the manner they will conduct themselves, will act as a beacon to inspire people around the globe to follow this ancient tradition of harmony during Games-time and beyond. I'd also like to thank Jacques Rogge and the IOC for the appropriate, heartfelt observation of remembrance held today in memory of victims of the tragic events that unfolded in Munich 40 years ago and which should never be forgotten.
Seb Coe, LOCOG Chair, said “As an athlete and as Chair of LOCOG, I have seen firsthand how sport can bring people together. Through our Truce Inspire programme, we have recognised local and neighbourhood projects across the UK which use sport or culture to address local conflict, to bring different neighbourhoods together and to raise awareness of the Olympic Truce. The UK Government has supported this vision too, working with NGOs in the UK and their embassies and High Commissions around the world.”
To commemorate the Olympic Truce, traditionally the Host Country presents a resolution to the United Nations (UN) calling for a truce during the Olympic Games. For the first time, all 193 UN member states unite to co-sponsor the Olympic Truce Resolution for the 2012 Games.
At yesterday’s Ceremony, athletes also made their first donations to the Giving Is Winning programme. This is a worldwide campaign led by the International Olympic Committee in partnership with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and LOCOG. Athletes and officials are encouraged to donate sports and casual clothing which will then be distributed by the UNHCR to various refugee camps around the globe and to people affected by violence, famine, and other catastrophes.
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Notes to editors:
For further information please contact the London 2012 Press Office on +44 (0)203 2012 100 or visit the website at www.london2012.com
For information on London’s Truce initiatives, which includes the distribution of educational material to 24,000 schools across the UK and the creation of 400 films about the Truce made by young people go to http://getset.london2012.com/en/get-set-goes-global/get-set-for-the-olympic-truce
For images of today’s unveiling please visit http://mm.gettyimages.com/mm/nicePath/locog?nav=pr171229502
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London 2012 Games partners:
The Worldwide Olympic Partners who support the London 2012 Olympic Games and the National Olympic Committees around the world are Coca-Cola, Acer, Atos, Dow, GE, McDonald’s, Omega, Panasonic, Procter and Gamble, Samsung and Visa.
LOCOG has seven domestic Tier One Partners - adidas, BMW, BP, British Airways, BT, EDF and Lloyds TSB. There are seven domestic Tier Two Supporters – Adecco, ArcelorMittal, Cadbury, Cisco, Deloitte, Thomas Cook and UPS. There are now twenty-eight domestic Tier Three Suppliers and Providers – Aggreko, Airwave, Atkins, Boston Consulting Group, CBS Outdoor, Crystal CG, Eurostar, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, G4S, GSK, Gymnova, Heathrow Airport, Heineken UK, Holiday Inn, John Lewis, McCann Worldgroup, Mondo, NATURE VALLEY, Next, Nielsen, Populous, Rapiscan Systems, Rio Tinto, Technogym, Thames Water, Ticketmaster, Trebor and Westfield.
There is one domestic Tier One Paralympic Games-only Partner, Sainsbury’s and one domestic Tier Three Paralympic Games-only Supplier, Otto Bock. The London 2012 Paralympic Games also acknowledges the support of the National Lottery.