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All sports-loving nations mourn Samaranch, says Hungarian PM

2010-04-22 09:32 BJT

BUDAPEST, April 21 (Xinhua) -- Hungary's Prime Minister Gordon Bajnai lamented the death of Juan Antonio Samaranch, former president of the International Olympic Committee, who died earlier on Wednesday at 89, saying that all sports-loving nations had suffered a loss.

Noting that Samaranch took the helm of the Olympic movement in the middle of the cold war, during a time when east and west mutually boycotted the 1980 Moscow and 1984 Los Angeles Games, Bajnai credited him with restoring unity to the Olympic movement.

"The Olympic family became whole again under his presidency," he said in a statement.

Pal Schmitt, head of the Hungarian Olympic Committee, voiced the sorrow of the entire Hungarian Olympic movement, noting that Samaranch had had a special affinity for Hungarian sports.

"He visited Budapest in almost every single year of his presidency, and attended the celebrations marking the 100th and 110th anniversaries of the Hungarian Olympic Committee," Schmitt said, adding that he had learned a great deal about solidarity and humaneness from Samaranch.

Editor: Zhang Ning | Source: Xinhua