Speech during opening ceremony of 2nd European Games
The time for bright victories has come. We are opening the 2nd European Games in the hospitable Belarusian land.
I would like to welcome participants of the competitions, guests of Minsk, everyone watching the opening ceremony on television and on the Internet, everyone, who is in the very center of the event here, in our legendary Dinamo Stadium.
Today we will light the Flame of Peace – the symbol of the European Games, which history is only starting. We are glad that Belarus has been given the honor to be at the origin of this grand project.
We are happy to be given an opportunity to introduce our guests to genuine Belarus – a beautiful, hospitable, and cozy country.
You will see for yourselves that it is home to the sincerest and kindest people, that our friendliness is not simple courtesy, but a trait of our character, a natural state of the soul.
You will see that tolerance and relations built on mutual trust and respect is how Belarusians live.
And we gift it all to you!
In the next ten days all of us will be able to dive deep into an atmosphere of extraordinary passions, to see captivating fighting for medals and for passes to the Olympic Games, to witness unbelievable achievements and the birth of new world sport stars.
I would like to address participants of the competitions. It is a great honor and a great responsibility for every athlete to represent his or her country at the European Games. Your victory will become a national legacy while personal records will become a matter of pride of the entire nation.
All of us together, residents of 50 countries participating in the 2nd European Games will genuinely admire winners, rejoice for those, who deserve to get the medals, congratulate them and thank them for emotions triggered by bright performances. I cannot but thank all of those, who brought joy to us this late at night – to Belarusians, Minsk guests, the millions of people, who are watching us on television and on the Internet. I personally thank Igor Krutoy and his team for daring to create such a masterly show.
Such moments unite nations, which means the great Olympic mission of presenting an arena for peaceful and honest rivalry of athletes and countries will always be of current interest and in demand.
Let’s work together to move all the modern political battles to sport venues for the benefit of mankind. Let’s fight for the title of the most powerful country only through sport.
I wish successful performance to all the athletes, self-restraint and patience to the coaches, and bright impressions to the fans.
May fire and the national Belarusian symbol – fern flower – warm our hearts with the light of goodness, inspire us to commit good deeds in the name of peace on Earth.
I declare the 2nd European Games open!