The president of the Spanish Olympic Committee (COE), moving away white, has made it clear this Tuesday in Zaragoza that in Spain’s candidacy to organize the 2020 Winter Games Catalonia and Aragon go hand in hand and that “no one dominates over anyone” in the project. “Respect, understanding and dialogue” are the keys, he said.
Blanco has met with the president of Aragon, Javier Lambán, at the Pignatelli in full controversy with Catalonia after the declarations of the Minister of the Presidency of the Generalitat, Laura Vilagrà, in which she spoke of a Catalan candidacy with “collaborations” with other territories, moving away from the idea of treating the Aragonese community as equals in the aspiration to organize an Olympic event in the Pyrenees for the first time.
After three years of talks with the Spanish Olympic Committee, this is a “crucial moment”, the Aragonese president acknowledged, at the press conference in the Columns Room of the Pignatelli after meeting with Blanco first thing in the morning.
“Spain has real possibilities of putting together a candidacy in the manner set by the Spanish Olympic Committee and the International Olympic Committee”, insisted Javier Lambán, who also recalled the trajectory of the community in the organization of international events, such as the Universiades of Pony.
This Friday Lambán was scheduled to meet with his Catalan counterpart, Pere Aragonès, to bring positions closer to the candidacy. However, the president of the Generalitat is confined to being close contact of a positive in covid, so the meeting to be held this Friday is, for now, up in the air. “The only thing I know is that they have an infected family member and he was awaiting PCR tests to determine what his agenda will be in the next few days,” Lambán said.
“We have options for Spain to organize the 2030 Games as long as Aragon and Catalonia go hand in hand, led by the COE,” stressed the head of the regional executive.
This is one “crucial” week also for the president of the COE, Alejandro Blanco, who tomorrow will meet with the Minister of the Catalan Presidency, Laura Vilagrà, with whom he spoke “immediately after” his statements last Friday.
“No one predominates over anyone. This is a country candidacy”
“It must be emphasized that this is a country candidacy, not only from Catalonia, and not only from Aragon, but from the Government of Spain”, he began by saying. “No one dominates over anyone”, Blanco continued, explaining that the “technical work” of the commission made up of representatives of the three institutions, the Spanish, Aragonese and Catalan governments continues without interference.
“Sometimes there are situations that alter the path, but everything can be solved”
“Sometimes there are situations that alter the path, but everything can be solved”, Blanco has expressed, in clear reference to the recent statements that have raised more than suspicions outside of Catalonia.
The candidacy, he recalled, will create jobs, improve the image of the Pyrenees and position the entire mountain territory for the near future. Having a clear objective, which is to host the 2030 Winter Games, there is only “one way” to achieve it. The one of unity and understanding.
The official presentation, in spring
The president of the COE has also advanced some of the deadlines for the presentation of the candidacy. The final work of the conformation of the candidacy will be presented, with the presidents of the Government of Spain, Pedro Sánchez; the one from Aragon, Javier Lambán, and the Catalan, Pere Aragonès, “at the end of March or beginning of April”.
However, Blanco has given fewer clues about the name of the candidacy, which will be one of the last issues to be decided. “Several commissions must be created. Now the technical one is working, then the infrastructure one and, finally, the great commission, the political commission, where the presidents of the Government will be, where the name has to be decided,” he declared.
Of course, he clarified that “although before the candidacies were always linked to cities, now that has changed. The IOC can take cities, territories, countries… That has changed. We have to find the name in which we all find them comfortable.”, White has assured.
The nomenclature must also reflect the spirit of the application. “There is no predominance of one territory over another”, insisted the president of the COE, who has set in the “equality, respect, understanding and dialogue” the keys for this candidacy to move forward.
On the other hand, given the Generalitat’s proposal to consult the public at the end of spring, Blanco has ruled out that this consultation is a “yes or no” referendum.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.