Posted 24.05.2012 14:02:10 UTC
Updated 24.05.2012 14:02:10 UTC
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has announced a three-way battle between Istanbul, Madrid and Tokyo to host the 2020 Olympics.
Hosting Olympic Games is a long nurtured dream for Istanbul. Around $14 billion has been invested into the city for this end.
And now Istanbul is again a candidate for the 5th time to host Olympics. The candidateship of Istanbul, in its 5th bid for hosting Olympics, was announced by Canada.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) elaborated the applications of Istanbul, Madrid, Tokyo, Doha and Baku. IOC assessed the countries to be given "official candidate city status" in 11 main headings. It needs to get at least 6 points or above in order to be qualified as an official candidate city, which Istanbul has successfully gained all.
Thus, Turkey in its 5th bid to host Olympics managed to get enough points leaving technical section finally behind.
Uğur Erdener, Chairman of National Olympic Committee of Turkey, Hasan Arat, Vice Chairman of National Olympic Committee of Turkey, who was representing Turkey at the meeting, and National Athlete Neslihan Darnel welcomed the good news with a great joy and in tears.
The Turkish delegation in Canada shared the good news with Turkish President Abdullah Gül and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan as well as with Youth and Sports Minister Suat Kılıç.
National Athlete Neslihan Darnel said she believes Istanbul will successfully proceed to the next level.
Following the announcement, National Basketball Team Captain Hidayet Türkoglu, who is also a NBA player, became a center of attention of the foreign press. Declared as "Istanbul 2020 Ambassador", Hidayet said "I can't find a word to tell my happiness."
After the cities in the short list to host Olympics were announced, experts say the race will be between Tokyo and Istanbul.
Now, Istanbul will wait for September 7, 2013.
The decision on which city will host 2020 Olympics will be made by the IOC in Argentine.